Chatham University

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Driven to teach in an urban environment?

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Committed to social justice in education?

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Determined to make a difference in students' lives?

If so, Chatham University and Propel Schools have an opportunity for students seeking a master's in teaching to make an immediate impact in the schools and communities that can benefit from it most. Better yet – our partnership means your work will come at no out-of-pocket tuition cost for your education.


About Pittsburgh Urban Teaching Corps

The Pittsburgh Urban Teaching Corps (PUTC) is a unique teacher-residency program that was developed by Propel Schools and Chatham University. The program prepares individuals to be teachers who are committed to social justice and equity in education. Successful participants finish the program as Pennsylvania-certified teachers with three years of teaching experience and the opportunity to make a positive difference in the lives of students and communities impacted by poverty and race.

Through the Pittsburgh Urban Teaching Corps, Propel Schools has created an opportunity for individuals from a wide range of professions to earn a career-changing master's degree in education tuition free (Master of Arts in Teaching degree from Chatham is valued at $40,000). Candidates receive formal training, certification, and a guided path toward teaching math and/or science at Propel Schools (English Language Arts certification may also be available through this program.)

Selected candidates will complete academic coursework from Chatham University's Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) program and serve as teaching apprentices supported by a Propel mentor for a full year. All candidates earn a monthly stipend ($1,350) and health benefits. At the completion of their apprentice year, they will impact the lives of students in a three-year, full-time, salaried teaching position at Propel Schools.

Please visit for a sample residency timeline and a full list of program benefits.

Program Benefits

Benefits provided by the Pittsburgh Urban Teaching Corps include:

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Fully funded tuition for a Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) degree from Chatham*

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Middle Level Certification (grades 4-8) or Secondary Certification (grades 7-12)

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$20,000 stipend to help cover living expenses plus health insurance

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Three years of full-time employment with Propel Schools

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Support from fellow PUTC members who contribute diverse backgrounds and interests

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Mentorship & personalized professional development from an accomplished educator team

*Participants are responsible for obtaining PA certification, books and other fees. In addition to PUTC funding opportunity, M.A. in Teaching students can also utilize federal funding programs to help offset the costs of tuition or qualify for student loan forgiveness. Read more »

LaVaugh Wesley Teaching

Chatham + Propel In Action

LaVaughn Wesley, MAT '16, is making a difference through Chatham University and Propel Schools. Read more about Mr. Wesley's background, approach to teaching, his impact on Propel McKeesport students, and what his students think of him as an educator and mentor on the Chatham Views blog.

A Class of His Own »

They know my story. And, together, we're building theirs. I always tell them, 'You can succeed no matter where you come from.' And, as long as they keep showing up, listening, and working hard, I'm going to help them get there.

– LaVaughn Wesley, MAT '16

Program Requirements


  • Bachelor's degree in History, Science, Mathematics, English or program with comparable coursework from an accredited college or university with a 3.0 GPA/4.0 scale
  • 2+ years prior experience working with children in an urban setting
  • Post-college life experience strongly preferred
  • Pennsylvania Department of Education clearances Act 34 (criminal), Act 151 (Child Abuse) and FBI Criminal History Verified Arrest/Conviction Report and negative TB test
  • Is not currently enrolled in, nor has completed a teacher preparation or certification program, nor is currently eligible for PA teaching certification


  • May 1, 2017 / Application period opens (applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis)
  • Ongoing / Video interviews due within 7 days
  • August 15, 2017 / Deadline for PUTC Applications
  • September 13, 2017 / Round Robin Interview Session 1*
  • September 20, 2017 / Round Robin Interview Session 2*
  • October 9, 2017 / Round Robin Interview Session 3*
  • October 11, 2017 / Deadline for Chatham Applications**
  • February 22-23, 2018 / Boot Camp: Two days of intensive interviews to select 30 Corps members
  • March 1, 2018 / Pittsburgh Urban Teaching Corps announced

* Applicants will attend only one of the Round Robin interview sessions as assigned
** Webinar for Chatham needs to be completed by October 11, 2017

About Propel Schools & Chatham University

A partnership for the future of urban education
With the PUTC, participants get a one-of-a-kind experience that's just as much about hands-on experience as it is about theory and practice, and that wouldn't be possible without a partnership between Propel Schools and Chatham University.

Established in 1869, Chatham University is consistently ranked as a Best College by U.S. News & World Report and prides itself on preparing men and women for lives of purpose, value and fulfilling work. Founded in 2003, Propel is among the largest, fastest-growing federations of charter schools in Pennsylvania, with one of the highest levels of student achievement among Pennsylvania public school districts serving low-income communities.