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Passion Not in Short Supply in Classroom Headed by Tatiana Cozzarelli '08

Passion Not in Short Supply in  
Classroom Headed By Tatiana Cozzarelli '08

by Alisa Giardinelli

Tatiana Cozzarelli '08
Tatiana Cozzarelli '08 with some of her students.

Tatiana Cozzarelli '08, now in her second year as a social studies teacher at Sophia Academy in Providence, R.I., is the youngest teacher at this private middle school for girls from low-income families. For her, according to a recent profile in Rhode Island Monthly, passion is in no short supply:

"She now strives daily to focus the girls on working hard and stretching their minds. Her dark hair pulled into a ponytail and dressed in a button-down white blouse and gray slacks, she is soft-spoken, confident and straight-talking as she directs the class."

Cozzarelli graduated from Swarthmore with an education and sociology/anthropology special major and a minor in women's studies. As a junior, she was one of 25 college students to receive a Rockefeller Brothers Fund Teaching Fellowship for Aspiring Teachers of Color. She believes that the work and training she gained at the College both in and outside the classroom prepared her well for her current role. 

"Swarthmore taught me very early on that teaching was social justice work," Cozzarelli says. "I learned so much about the inequalities in education based on class, race, and gender. That made me want to become a teacher and made me a good fit for a school such as Sophia Academy."