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Alumni Publications

News from Alumni


Named in the Top Ten: Naureen Ali, S12

Each year, TFA selects a few second-year corps members, that they feel exemplify the TFA core values and the vision of transformational teaching and leadership at the highest level, to receive the Sue Lehmann Excellence in Teaching and Leadership Award. It's the biggest award given to corps members within Teach for America.

Naureen Ali just completed her second year of working with Teach For America down in Houston, TX; and was selected by her region to represent Houston (over 250 corps members in our region) in the national competition. She was placed in the national competition and out of 5,500 corps, was named as one of this year’s top 10 TFA teachers in America!!!!!!!!!!  She is the first Brandeis student to place so high in TFA’s national competition.   A HUGE congratulations to you, Naureen!

Naureen Ali, '12

Currently teaching summer school and returning for a 3rd year in the classroom, Naureen is also taking her MCAT this summer, as medical school will always be her dream.  However her experience with TFA has affirmed her commitment to fighting for children and addressing injustice on all levels; and as a physician, she hopes to continue this work.

Tajikistan

Rachel Landauer '09
Toronto, Canada

Rachel Landauer '09 writes from Tajikistan: "This is a very curious country, especially because Central Asia is a region I have never known much about. It's a whirlwind of dichotomy: modern shops (like an Adidas store) and open air bazaars; Russian, Tajik and Pamiri speakers; women in miniskirts alongside women in Hijabs; people who cling to the security provided to them by the Soviets in the past and people who embrace Tajik independence; Russian opulence and austereness alongside traditional Tajik warmth and simplicity.

"Apart from wonderful culture, beautiful nature, a new language to learn and edible food (edible, not delicious), I am learning a lot about health in development. My placement is with the Aga Khan Health Service in Khorog, the administrative center of the Gorno Badakshan Semi Autonomous Oblast. Acting as a program assistant to a bunch of different projects, I get an interesting balance of office/desk work and being out in the field, which I appreciate.

"I have seen villages more geographically remote and isolated than I ever imagined, and I enjoy learning about barriers to development and ways to extend health services to these places (how to use solar energy to power hospitals and schools, how to create employment opportunities, how to improve diet and nutrition through greenhouses, etc.)  The remains of the Soviet infrastructure of public services and safety nets, no longer supportable under the Tajik government, makes for another interesting context. For example, health care provision is largely free to the population but (a) it's of poor quality (b) hospitals and primary health facilities do not have the technology/supplies they need (c) salaries are so low that there is a severe shortage of trained health professionals and (d) patients are forced to pay out of pocket, informal bribes for services."