It was my final year studying and taking only honors courses in English through the Honors College at Michigan State University. I was looking into graduate study and came across one K. Kelly Wise and the Institute for Recruitment of Teachers (IRT). Accepted into their 2005 cohort, I remember attending the college fair at IRT on the campus of Phillips Academy, Andover and being told to stop by the Purdue University table by then Mr. Wise. Why? It was his alma mater and I had the intellectual DNA to become a Boilermaker. That was in 2005, and in 2007 and 2013, respectively I obtained my Master’s and Ph.D. degrees from Purdue University! En route, I have received literary and teaching awards, grants and stipends, the distinguished Purdue Doctoral Fellowship and even published a book: The Position of Magic In Selected Medieval Spanish Texts as a Master’s student through Cambridge Scholars Publishing. I do not share these accomplishments to boast in my own strength and erudition but to boast in the guidance and advising of now Dr. (Hon.) K. Kelly Wise and his team.
With the IRT’s mission and dedication of it’s programs to assist minorities with high intelligence and high intellectual promise, the IRT has flourished and my story is both witness and testament to that! I owe the IRT a lifetime of thanks.