Donovan Urban Teaching Scholars Program

Donovan Urban Teaching Scholars

The Charles F. Donovan Urban Teaching Scholars program is an intensive one-year Masters in Education, M.Ed., program leading to teacher licensure, that seeks to prepare K-12 teachers to work effectively with students and families in urban schools throughout the country. 

The Donovan Urban Teaching Scholars Program builds on specific programs of study with interactive urban education seminars, critical inquiry research, social justice education, and community building that is responsive to the academic and socio-cultural needs of urban youth and their families.

Each year the program recruits nationally for a diverse cohort of up to 30 graduate students, many of whom were educated in urban schools themselves, and aspire to give back to their communities in constructive and life long ways. For the majority of applicants, the Donovan program is their initial step into urban teaching. Some have prior teaching experience, or hold a license in elementary or secondary education and want to add a license in new subject areas. Other students are in the process of career change, but all are dedicated to preparing themselves to work as teachers in urban schools.

Donovan Urban Scholars may select from the following programs:

  • Early Childhood Education
  • Elementary Education
  • Secondary Education
  • Moderate Special Needs

Supportive Cohort Experience

Donovan Scholars participate in cohort centered courses and seminars with a focus on teaching methodologies, problems of practice, current national and world trends, culturally responsive teaching, community building, and teaching for social justice and equity across the curriculum. In addition, scholars in our cohorts are provided opportunities to leverage the dense bonding and diverse bridging relationships that are built into their Practicum experiences to grow as teachers and educators. Ultimately, our graduates go on to enjoy rewarding positions in urban education settings around the world.  

Commitment to Diversity

Driven by the philosophy that educator diversity within urban schools should reflect the diverse population of students they serve, the program commits itself to ensuring two-thirds of every incoming cohort are First Generation, Educators of Color. 

Nested Circles of Support - Ohana

Ohana means family in Hawaiian. The Donovan Ohana has a place for anyone and everyone who becomes a part of it. Donovan Scholars play a crucial role in this nested circle of support that begins with centering the young people and those typically on the margins. In addition, through a dynamic, relational, and reciprocal structuring of the individuals and groups within the program, Donovan faculty, alumni, practicum supervisors, and program staff commit themselves to creating a more just world by the prioritizing the success and flourishing of Donovan Scholars.

Social Justice Infused Urban Teacher Education

The Donovan Urban Teaching Scholars Program builds on specific programs of study and intergrates interactive urban education seminars, critical inquiry research, social justice education, and community building that is responsive to the academic and socio-cultural needs of urban youth and their families.  

Year-Long Practicum

Donovan Scholars are committed to pre- or full- practicum (student teaching) in our partner urban schools in mini-cohorts with our Donovan alumni. Additoinally, the program has the capacity to adapt practicum requirements, if you are working as a teacher or teaching assistant in the local area. 

Alumni Community and Engagement

Strong alumni mentoring and induction opportunities are provided for Donovan Scholars post graduation.

At a Glance


How many courses?

The number of courses vary by program of study. 

How long will it take?

Full-time students complete the program in 1 year.

When can I start?

Students must begin the program in the Summer semester in order to complete the program in 1 year. 

Financial Assistance

All Donovan Scholars receive 50% tuition remission. In addition, the Lynch School of Education Graduate Admissions office and Urban Outreach Initiatives work with each Donovan Scholar to create a generous financial package that may include additional grants, scholarships and internships. Applicants should complete the FAFSA process. Upon graduation, Donovan Scholars commit to teach in urban schools (Catholic, charter or public) for at least 3 years.

Application Information


If you have questions about the application, please email If you have questions regarding the receipt of application materials, please email


SEUS-Eligible Programs Only
December 1
Regular Decision

Application Form

In order to apply to the Donovan program, applicants must:

  • Demonstrate a prior commitment to meeting the needs of children and families in urban areas
  • Submit an application to the Lynch School of Education, and be accepted into a M.Ed. of Education program in early childhood, elementary, secondary, reading and literacy, or special needs education. (Please check Donovan in the pull-down menu. Indicate your interest in Urban Education and Donovan Urban Teaching Scholars in your personal statement).

Apply Now

A non-refundable application fee of $75 is required, however, this fee is waived for select applicants. To view the list of approved waivers, view the Application Fee Waiver criteria below.

Application Fee Waivers



To be uploaded to your online Application Form


In addition to your academic history and relevant work experience, please include any licenses currently held, any social justice-related experience, any language skills other than English, and any research experience or publications.


Personal Statement

To be uploaded to your online Application Form.

In 1,000-1,500 words, describe your academic and professional goals, your interest and relevant experience in Urban Education, and your future plans, expectations, and aspirations. 

Letters of Recommendation

Identification of recommenders/instructions to recommenders are outlined in the online Application Form

Two letters of recommendation are required with at least one required from an academic source. Applicants may submit one additional recommendation of their choice.  


All official undergraduate and graduate transcripts must be sent to to the Graduate Admissions office before the application deadline. Please note the following:

  • Only official sealed (unopened) transcripts are acceptable. An official postsecondary transcript must be printed on official institutional paper and include at least one of the following: an institutional watermark, the registrar’s signature, or the registrar's seal.

  • Copies and unofficial transcripts sent directly from applicants are not acceptable, the transcript must come directly from the institution.

  • If you are a current student and have not completed your undergraduate and/or graduate degree, the most updated version of your transcript is acceptable.

Official electronic transcripts are accepted when sent directly to from the institution. When requesting electronic transcripts, you must manually type in to ensure it is received by our office. 

If your degree was obtained from an institution outside of the U.S. you are required to submit a course-by-course evaluation completed by a National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES) approved evaluator. A complete list of NACES-approved evaluators is found on the Directory of NACES Members.

Mailed transcript(s) should be sent to the following address:

Lynch Office of Graduate Admissions, Boston College
Campion Hall 135
140 Commonwealth Avenue
Chestnut Hill, MA 02467

Standardized Tests

An official GRE score report – sent directly from ETS – must be submitted by the application deadline.

  • This program requires all applicants to have taken the GRE in a maximum of 5 years prior to application being submitted, regardless of previous academic coursework, previous degrees/credentials earned, and/or professional experience. No exceptions will be made.

The GRE is not required for BC alumni and fifth years. Fifth year students, please email your updated personal statement and resume to Jessica Rivers and Catherine Wong; you do not need to complete the online application. 

For more information about the GRE exam, including test dates and testing sites, click below.

GRE Information

Lynch School of Education GRE Code: 3218

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