The day Angela struck gold

On the hunt for her first teaching job, Angela Riggs needed expert advice—and found it in the CTQ Collaboratory.

Angela Riggs, Collaboratory memberAngela Riggs got lucky. The University of Central Florida assigned her to be supervised by educator-in-residence Megan Allen (2010 Florida Teacher of the Year, National Board Certified Teacher, and CTQ Collaboratory member).

Angela recalls: “Megan was able to cut through the fluff of textbook scenarios, and give us real-world insights into her classroom, her kids, and her passion for teaching.”

But Megan’s influence went further. She encouraged Angela to join the CTQ Collaboratory to learn from expert teachers across the country.


Angela soon realized she’d struck gold: “The Collaboratory was such a welcoming community, right from the first day I signed up.”

In July, Angela moved to Portland, Oregon, complicating her job search.

As a brand new teacher seeking work in an unfamiliar area, Angela knew she had to stand out. But how?

She turned to the Collaboratory: “I know that the cover letter serves to go beyond the cut-and-dried information of my résumé—to offer some of my enthusiasm and personality, and help convince the reader to call me for an interview. What kinds of examples should I include? Do you have suggestions about things that should not go in the letter?”

Feedback poured in—from teachers, retired teachers, and administrators in AL, CO, NC, and VA. Soon Angela had received advice on her draft letter, how to rock the interview, and strategic ways to follow up.

Angela landed her first teaching position within just a few weeks.

Today, she says, “The Collaboratory has provided a community of mentors who are always willing to help with tips, feedback, and advice. I’m in Oregon, but I can talk with teachers all over the country when I have questions or want to engage in a discussion about classroom management or project ideas. ”

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  • SusanGraham

    Three Cheers!

    • Yeah for you Angela!
      • Yeah for the community of teachers here who support each other across a span of years and experience
        • Yeah for CTQ who has helped many excellent teachers make the transition to teacher leaders.
  • ArielSacks

    This happened to me too!

    Wow, this makes me think of how I felt when I joined the Collaboratory (then TLN Forum) as a third year teacher.  I experienced the same amazing mentorship, resources and inspiration that you describe. It really did feel like striking gold!  Now, in my tenth year, I am that much more confident, well-rounded and eager to learn and to lead. 



  • PatrickLedesma

    A Lifelong Learning Community

    Like Ariel, I also joined the Collaboratory (then the TLN Forum) very early in my career.  At every stage of professional development and transition over the past decade or so, I had very smart colleagues in the Forum who helped with expertise and advise. The Collaboratory is truly a lifelong learning community of enthusiastic and dedicated educators.

  • Sharon H.

    High Quality Mentoring

    Hello New Teachers and Mentors,

    I am the District Mentor Coordinator for th Nauset Schools on Cape Cod. I always try to give my new teachers great web resources to support them in their teaching so student learning increases. Here’s a GREAT resource “The Teaching Channel”, visiting this site is like stricking gold. Enjoy the video of “Sarah Brown Wessling- Improving Practice”.