Michigan's AmeriCorps Alum Spotlight

MI AmeriCorps Alum Spotlight - December 2019: Teachia Turrentine, Success Mentors

Teachia Turrentine is a huge advocate of AmeriCorps and of service in general. In 2017, she served as a member of the Academic All Stars AmeriCorps program through the Youth Development Commission (YDC) and was part of the Success Mentors team.

The Academic All Stars program involved a partnership with the Detroit Public Schools and several other community partners and was part of the My Brother’s Keeper (MBK) Success Mentors initiative. Together, these partners focused on implementing an evidence-based, data-driven student support mentor system to tackle chronic absenteeism.

Teachia noted, “I served at a time when I was still trying to find my place in the professional world.” Through her service with the Academic All Stars program, Teachia not only learned essential lessons about how to address the complex issue of chronic absenteeism, but she also gained confidence in her own abilities. “My AmeriCorps service meant so much to me because it showed me my scope of influence and how I can really make a difference in communities.”

Teachia took those lessons learned and is now applying them to her new position as the Assistant AmeriCorps Program Coordinator with the Attendance Coaches AmeriCorps program. This program, administered by the Detroit Public Schools Community District (DPSCD) utilizes AmeriCorps members to improve overall student attendance behaviors in each DPSCD school. The goal is to reduce the district's overall chronic absenteeism percentage.

“My service year taught me so much that, over two years later, I still recognize the value of AmeriCorps and am now able to serve in a different capacity,” Teachia stated. “Where I am today is very much the result of my AmeriCorps service.”

For more information about the Attendance Coaches AmeriCorps program, please contact program director Meaghan Gorski at Meaghan.gorski@detrotk12.org. For more information about AmeriCorps, go to www.americorps.gov.