As an undergraduate at Princeton University, Wendy Kopp created a plan to build a movement for educational equity by enlisting her generation's most promising future leaders to teach for two years in the nation's neediest urban and rural public schools. After graduation, Kopp set about making her plan a reality, founding Teach for America in 1989. With no teaching or business experience of her own, she created a multimillion dollar organization. Today, more than 3,500 corps members are teaching in our country's neediest communities, reaching approximately 300,000 students. They join more than 10,000 Teach For America alumni -- still in their twenties and thirties -- who are already assuming significant leadership roles in education and social reform.
She recounts the experience in her book, One Day, All Children: The Unlikely Triumph of Teach For America and What I Learned Along the Way. In her book, she not only describes how she created and built Teach For America, but also shares her thoughts about what it will take to realize her vision that one day all children in this nation will have the opportunity to attain an excellent education. In 2004, Teach for America received a record number of 17,000 applications and is the number one employer of new graduates on some college campuses. In 2005, Wendy Kopp created a Katrina Relief Corps to serve students and communities impacted by Hurricane Katrina.
In 2008 Wendy Kopp was named in Time magazine's "100 of the World's Most Influential People."