Teach for America Gets Immersed in Humboldt Park


On Thursday, June 20th 50 Teach for America staff and teachers were given an in-depth tour of the Humboldt Park community. These teachers will be working in various schools throughout the Greater Humboldt Park area beginning in the fall. The purpose of the day’s events was to immerse the teachers in the Humboldt Park community in order for them to better serve the students of this community.


The day began with a panel discussion with community leaders at Roberto Clemente Community Academy. The community leaders included Marvin Garcia, Marcey Sorensen, Eliud Medina, Bill Gerstein, Jessica Fuentes and Jose E. López. The panelists spoke about the misconceptions of the Humboldt Park community and the efforts taking place to revamp the educational system in Humboldt Park. Following the panel, the TFA teachers and staff were given a tour of Paseo Boricua by Eduardo Arocho. They learned about the history of Puerto Ricans in Chicago and about the community’s efforts to fight gentrification in Humboldt Park.


After having lunch at various restaurants on Paseo Boricua, the group volunteered at different community organizations including the Division Street Business Development Association, Norwegian American Hospital, Vida Sida and the Diabetes Empowerment Center. They ended their day with poet Michael Reyes and a reflection led by Jose E. López, Executive Director of the Puerto Rican Cultural Center, at the Institute of Puerto Rican Arts and Culture.