The application window for the 2020-21 Tennessee Educator Fellowship is open through Monday, March 2. Fellows from the 2019-20 cohort share why their colleagues should apply.

“The Tennessee Educator Fellowship has been one of the greatest opportunities I have ever had the privilege to participate in. The lessons, ways of thinking, and connections I have made through the fellowship have significantly altered my trajectory as an educator and advocate. My decision-making process has gone from only using the lens of classroom teacher to also using the lens of student-centered advocate. I will always reflect on my career as ‘before the Tennessee Educator Fellowship’ and ‘after the Tennessee Educator Fellowship.’”  – Haley Lee, Claiborne County

“If you feel passionate about education and want to be a part of changing outcomes for all learners in the state, you should apply for the fellowship. Your voice is important and deserves to be heard.” – Liza Vaughn, Williamson County

“This has been the greatest learning experience of my career. If you are willing to push yourself out of your comfort zone to open yourself to new learning, this experience is for you.” – Ashley James, Paris Special School District

“In my experience as an educator, which has spanned multiple trainings and professional development, there is nothing that has challenged me more to be better for students, both in advocacy and as an educator.” – Vandy Watt, McMinn County 

“An educator should apply for the Tennessee Educator Fellowship because not only should we expect our students to grow and learn, we as educators should be growing and learning as well. The Tennessee Educator Fellowship provides the tools that are necessary to move the needle in student-centered education policies. Whether it is communication training, policy education, or advocacy consultations, the fellowship will push you to become a student-centered voice ensuring that Tennessee students receive the high-quality education that they deserve.” – Carol Nanney, McKenzie Special School District

“I have always had a passion for seeing Tennessee’s students advance in education. This fellowship has taught me how to be an active voice and participant in advancing education in my state!” – Melody Hawkins, Knox County

“As educators, we all have a voice that we want to share, but oftentimes we aren’t sure of how to do that. SCORE provides the opportunities, resources, and trainings that are needed in supporting teachers to become strong advocates for policy and student success in Tennessee.” – Lize Bailey, Sullivan County

“I have stepped out of my comfort zone in many different ways through this fellowship. Before this, I was content to just stay in my own school bubble and do what was best for my students. I now feel a desire to ensure that ALL students are getting what is best for them. I have found my teacher voice, and I am able to express it with much more confidence than before!” – Sara Perry, Marshall County

“The Tennessee Educator Fellowship has empowered me to use my voice to fight for students and their education. I am more willing to spend time discussing education in a positive light so that I may inspire other teachers to see the great work we have done in Tennessee. It has empowered me to view my students through a new lens because they are the future, and it is vitally important that they have teachers who are showing them how to be advocates, use their voices, and value the importance of education.” – Crystal Brooks, Jackson-Madison County

The Tennessee Educator Fellowship brings together a diverse group of educators from across the state who are passionate about their profession and student-focused education policy. To gain the knowledge and skills to be effective student-focused advocates, fellows will engage in policy learning, skills training, and coaching conversations during a one-year term. Fellows receive a $5,000 stipend for their work.

Learn more and apply. Applications are due by 11:59 pm CST on Monday, March 2. If you have questions, please refer to our FAQ. You may also contact SCORE’s Director of Educator Engagement, Leigh Cooksey, at