BEAM Counselor and Teaching Assistant
This summer, change the lives of underserved students with mathematical talent. Be a role model, guide, and friend to your students as they begin their path to advanced mathematics.
More about the program
Bridge to Enter Advanced Mathematics (BEAM) is a five-year program for students with talent in mathematics from low-income neighborhoods of New York City and Los Angeles. Students start by attending our summer camps after 6th and 7th grade. We support them through high school graduation, providing them with the resources and enrichment opportunities needed to successfully pursue math, science and engineering majors in college. All of our students attend schools where at least 75% of students receive free lunch. For most of them, programs like this would otherwise be completely out of reach.
We invite college students and recent graduates to work as counselor/TAs at either BEAM 6, a five-week day program that takes place in both New York City and Los Angeles, or BEAM 7, a three-week residential program (with food, housing, and transportation provided). At BEAM 6. students are introduced, often for the first time, to mathematics beyond the standard middle school curriculum. At BEAM 7, students live on a college campus in upstate NY, learning mathematics such as number theory, combinatorics, and astronomy. At all BEAM programs, students build a close intellectual community and make friends that will last a lifetime.
We aim to create a life-changing experience for all the students that attend. We expose them to mathematics that they've never dreamed of before. They'll also join a community of peers, perhaps for the first time, all interested in mathematics, and we'll supplement that social environment with activities, field trips, and more. You can see more about the program's details on this website (just explore the links above).
This is the program's eighth year in New York and first year in Los Angeles. As far as we know, nothing quite like this exists elsewhere. Our experience has been that the program really changes lives and serves as a model for outreach across the country, while expanding the talent pool for mathematics and related fields.
What is the job like?
For the first time, the students at this program will discover that they don't have to be alone to do math. As counselors, it's your job to create the unique social environment at the program and also to provide critical support for the academics. While there are differences between the specific tasks to be done at each program, general responsibilities include supervising students, running activities, and building the social environment. Counselors also work with students on mathematics, both one-on-one and as assistants in classes, and they are role models to the students, helping them as they adjust to the program and develop their self-identities.
This is a demanding job and you should expect to work very hard, but it is also very rewarding. You need to give it your all—but in return, you will change the life of some amazing kids, gain teaching experience, and get plenty of chances to learn some new math yourself. You'll also get the chance to be part of a tight-knit team, and you will be a critical part of shaping what the program looks like.
- Be at least 18 years old by July 8, 2018. If applying to BEAM 6 LA, you must be at least 18 years old by June 18, 2018.
- Have completed a year of college by Summer 2018.
- Have the mathematical skills and experience sufficient to think on your feet while TAing challenging BEAM classes. (See the pages on the programs for the types of classes taught at each program.)
- Be reliable and take initiative.
- Be able to help kids have fun. (You don't need to be traditionally outgoing if you can engage kids in fun activities, but it helps.)
The main part of the application is a few short-answer questions to help us get to know you. For convenience, we've made this into a webform to fill out. (See button on the right.)
Additionally, please send a transcript to firstname.lastname@example.org. An unofficial transcript is fine—a printout of your grades works well. We're not interested in your GPA as much as we want to see what your background is like in mathematics and related fields. In this spirit, please make sure it includes the in-progress classes you are currently taking.
We are going to take applications on a rolling basis. The sooner you submit your application, the sooner we can schedule an interview and get you a response. However, we strongly recommend you submit your application by February 20, 2018. After that date, we will keep our website updated with availability for the summer. If you are unsure of your summer plans, we encourage you to apply early and then work out the details with us afterwards. If you need a decision from us before the deadline, apply and let us know of your constraints, and we may be able to provide a quicker reply.
Here are some closing words from some of our past counselors:
As a counselor at [BEAM], you're more than just a counselor. You're a role model, a leader and a friend. It's exciting to see how much appreciation students gain for mathematics by the end of the summer, and it cannot be done without the help of influential counselors. - Nerline Hyppolite, Queens College TIME2000 Program
You get to be an integral part of a life-changing program for kids who really deserve it. You also get to work with some of the most caring and talented people I've ever had the pleasure of interacting with. - Victor Bhattacharyya, Harvey Mudd College
[BEAM] has by far been one of the most memorable experiences of my life; to work with a team that constantly manages to teach you something new, to witness how kids handle the complexities of their intellectual and personal lives, to be a part of this massive infusion of creativity, constant energy, noise and drama, friendships and empathy, and a whole lot of edgy math all along, the experience really was, borrowing the phrase from one of the [BEAM] alumni, "somethin' else!" - Siddhartha Baral, Bard College
[BEAM] inspires greatness, opens minds, and changes lives; there's nothing like it. - Ana Portnoy, University of Puerto Rico Mayaguez
The students are the best part about working at [BEAM]. They are enthusiastic, funny and often very insightful. It is an amazing and rewarding experience to be with the students as they grow and learn as both humans and also as young mathematicians. - Matthew Hirsh, Swarthmore College
[BEAM] is a great place to share your enthusiasm for math. The students are curious, and it is a rewarding experience as a role model to know that you are helping them better themselves. - Yuhui Pang, University of Chicago
We are always available to answer any questions you might have, so please feel free to get in touch. We look forward to working with you this summer!
Program Manager, Bridge to Enter Advanced Mathematics