The Mill Institute’s 2024-2025 Teacher Fellowship applications are now open!
The Mill Institute at UATX
May 13, 2024

The Mill Institute’s 2024-2025 Teacher Fellowship applications are now open!

Join a movement of educators dedicated to viewpoint diversity

Maggie Kelly
Maggie Kelly
University of Austin

The Mill Institute at UATX is growing a network of teachers and students who are building classroom cultures that promote curiosity and open inquiry. 

The Mill Institute has opened applications for its third Teacher Fellowship, which will launch in the Fall of 2024. Participants will receive training on the Mill Institute's framework, create and workshop new classroom resources that support open classroom dialogue, and hear from experts across a range of disciplines. Fellows will also join a supportive and vibrant community of peers. All participants will receive a $1,000 stipend.

“The most significant change I have seen in my students since I started the Mill fellowship is their profound engagement and sophistication in addressing complex, global issues, underscored by a newfound readiness to question settled beliefs,” wrote Travis Gilmore, a teacher from Dallas, Texas, and one of last year’s participants. 

“This shift was particularly evident during a weeks-long project in my World Cultures class on the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, where students were tasked with examining the intricacies of the dispute from different perspectives,” Gilmore continued.

A fellow from Los Angeles wrote: “My students  are far less rigid, and I can see it in their work, dialogue, and also just in how they listen.”

The Mill Institute, founded by Ilana Redstone and Ellie Avishai, joined the University of Austin in 2022 to help teachers and educational administrators navigate contentious topics with students and throughout their school communities. It takes its name from English philosopher John Stuart Mill’s insight that “He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that.”

Ellie Avishai, Executive Director of the Mill Institute, explains: "The Teacher Fellowship is foundational to our core mission of supporting open and curious classrooms. We have seen teachers from schools that are liberal, conservative,  private, public, religious, secular, urban and rural all come together with a common goal of helping their students become sophisticated and compassionate thinkers. It’s inspiring to work with these teachers each year.” ." 

Last year’s Mill Institute fellows gather in Austin, Texas 

“The most significant change I see in myself (as a result of the Mill Institute Teaching Fellowship) is one of mindset,” another participant wrote of last year’s fellowship.

“It is easy to feel isolated and to question yourself when you are the only person who is challenging settled thinking.”

“Meeting a diverse group of educators who share my belief in the importance of viewpoint diversity was refreshing and intellectually stimulating,” they continued. “I found myself deeply engaged with other fellows and in our work, and this helped me to avoid burnout during the 23-24 school year and feel motivated to continue challenging students and myself into the future.” 

Ready to join a movement of educators bringing civil discourse and democracy into the classroom? Learn more and apply here. Applications close June 15th.

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