Perkins Scholars are TSTT alumni teachers, who have been teaching for 10 or more years. Every year TSTT recognizes these notable teachers who cross this important milestone with awarding them the prestigious golden apple. The award is named after the Founder and CEO Dr. Bettye H. Perkins and signifies the highest level of achievement any TSTT graduate can attain.

TSTT’s impact is best described by the people who participate in the program, as students, teacher mentors, and school leaders who share our passion for education. Here are just a few of these accomplished educators; reflections on their journeys.

Jeffery Cole

In 1995, Jeffrey Cole was one of TSTT’s first recruits. At the time, he was an unmotivated high school student in Westchester County, New York. According to his worried mother, he had no particular career goals.

Thanks to his guidance counselor’s encouragement, he joined TSTT, a new program that tapped diverse and economically challenged students to consider teaching as a profession. Jeffrey soon found himself in a summer internship tutoring younger children—and he loved it. He went on to attend college on a scholarship arranged through TSTT. He eventually became an elementary school teacher and is now an assistant director of special education in a large urban school district.

Emerly Martinez

Emerly Martinez was a student in TSTT in 1995 as a sophomore at Ossining High School. He was the first TSTT graduate to reach 10 years in the teaching profession. He taught high school social studies at Ossining High School for 13 years where he ran the Model UN Club. He offers the same support he received to his students through a mentoring program he created for Latino male students. Emerly Martinez, is now Principal at the Cornwall Central High School in Orange county, NY.

Dr. Merica Neufville

Dr. Merica Neufville was a TSTT student when she attended Lincoln High School in Yonkers, NY and continued in the program until she graduated from the College of New Rochelle, a TSTT partnering college. She taught math at the Woodlands Middle School in Greenburgh, NY for 10 years, and served as a TSTT teacher mentor for dozens of TSTT high school students, helping them prepare for college and to become educators. Dr. Neufville, is now an Assistant Principal at the Cross Hill Academy in the Yonkers Public Schools District.

Dr. Latisha Payne

Dr. Letitia S. Payne, a TSTT alumna and Special Education Teacher at Anne M. Dorner Middle School in Ossining, New York. Dr. Payne, a Perkins Scholar (10-year teacher) earned her doctorate degree this past May 2018 from Manhattanville College.

Maribel Carchi

Maribel Carchi has been a life science teacher at the Anne M. Dorner Middle School in Ossining, NY for 11 years. She still remembers when her Spanish teacher at Haldane High School in Cold Spring, NY first recruited her to join TSTT. She credits TSTT for its support in high school, during her years at Marist College, and helping her to land her first teaching position. Ms. Carchi was named a Perkins Scholar in 2012.