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Billiken Teacher Corps

The Billiken Teacher Corps at Saint Louis University combines service and teaching to offer a unique opportunity for faith-driven college graduates to have a transformative impact on Catholic schools in the St. Louis metro area. Participants earn a Master of Arts in Teaching and complete their Missouri teaching certification while receiving full tuition remission.

This academic program attracts graduates who possess the compassion to care for those most in need, a commitment to their communities and the courage to carry out their convictions. And it's all backed by the rigor of a postgraduate education from Saint Louis University's School of Education.

A proud member of the University Consortium for Catholic Education, the Billiken Teacher Corps program has received praise from local and national media outlets, as well as in the Saint Louis University alumni magazine, for its work in the community.

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Foundational Pillars

At all times, Billiken Teacher Corps teachers take on the mantra of "Teach Me." It is the student saying to his/her teacher, "Teach Me." It is the teacher saying to his/her student, "Teach Me." It is all of us saying to Christ our ultimate teacher, "Teach Me." With this in mind, the program is built on three pillars.

Service Leadership

  • Engage in a full-time teaching experience in an urban Catholic school in St. Louis.
  • Receive mentoring and support from course instructors, who will guide your development as a future leader in education.
  • Develop a deep sense of the challenges present in an urban environment and of the ways Catholic education can provide a future for young people in need.

Advanced Education from SLU

  • Earn a master's degree and complete your Missouri teaching certification while receiving full tuition remission.
  • Thirty-seven credit hours are required, most of which are taken through intensive summer coursework.

Personal and Spiritual Formation

  • Live and learn among a community of your peers in the Catholic tradition of service.
  • Share household responsibilities, participate in community meetings on various topics including social analysis and interpersonal dynamics, and receive personal mentoring.
  • Grow your faith through Ignatian spirituality with an annual retreat and an ongoing accompaniment.

Benefits of the Billiken Teacher Corps Program

Completing this academic program requires a dedication to service in the Catholic, Jesuit Tradition. In recognition of this commitment, SLU offers the following benefits for graduate students in the Billiken Teacher Corps:

  • Full tuition remission for a master's-level degree in teacher preparation
  • Monthly stipend
  • Opportunity for federal loan deferment
  • Nominal rent for a community living experience
Billiken Teacher Corps

Applying to the Billiken Teacher Corps Program

If you are interested in the Billiken Teacher Corp program, apply online to Saint Louis University through the Office of Graduate Admission. Applications submitted before Jan. 20 will be given priority consideration. Please email Ronny O'Dwyer, S.J., program coordinator, to indicate your interest in Billiken Teacher Corps prior to applying.

Billiken Teacher Corps Application Checklist

All items will be submitted via the graduate admission application portal:

  • Graduate school application - choose the "Masters of Arts in Teaching (Billiken Teacher Corps)” option from the drop down menu when you are given the program options.
  • Official GRE scores
  • One page professional resume
  • Official undergraduate transcript
  • Personal goal statement
  • Four letters of recommendation from each of the following categories: professor, supervisor, spiritual mentor (chaplain, campus minister, priest, recotr, spiritual director, etc.), and a friend or roommate.
  • Essay: Upload your responses in the form of a single document in the section of the graduate application entitled “Essay Question.” Each essay should not exceed 350 words. Please use concrete examples from your life to support your responses.

    At the end of the document, indicate whether you would prefer to teach elementary, middle school, high school or have no preference. If you choose elementary, indicate when you would like to teach kindergarten, first grade, second grade, third grade, fourth grade, fifth grade, foreign language, music, art, physical education, or if you have no preference. If you choose middle or high school, indicate whether you would like to teach English, math, social studies, science, foreign language, music, art, physical education, business/technology, theology or if you have no preference.

    • How does being a Catholic school teacher in the Billiken Teacher Corps fit into your life story? What is your “why” that drives you?
    • What is behind your desire to live in an intentional faith community? What excites you about community and what do you foresee your limitations to be?
    • Who is one person or what is one experience that has shaped your spiritual life and practices?

In addition to the items above, you will need to send a 90 second introductory video about who you are and what inspired you to apply to