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Joana Mondal

The TEAK Fellowship is proud to participate in the 2018 TCS New York City Marathon. Our team of five runners have committed to training and raising money with the promise that 100% of every dollar will be used for the TEAK Fellowships college access and success programs.


For the next 4 months, we’ll be highlighting each of our runners and sharing why they chose to run for TEAK. First up, we have Joana Mondal, a TEAK alumna from Class 6. Here she shares why she’s running for TEAK:


Joana Mondal


TEAK Class: 6

High School: Phillips Exeter Academy

College: Union College

Profession: Social Worker, working as a therapist at Montefiore Behavioral Health Center in the Bronx, an outpatient mental health center


I have chosen to run the 2018 TCS New York City Marathon on November 4, 2018, in support of the TEAK Fellowship, a cause very important to me. 


The TEAK Fellowship was founded in 1998 as a free NYC-based program that helps talented students from low-income families achieve their potential. Through intensive after-school and summer classes, TEAK prepares middle school students to get into the nation’s most selective high schools and colleges. TEAK’s strong support system ensures that students thrive in their high schools and graduate from college, ready to pursue their professional goals and positively impact the world.


I am proud to say that I am a TEAK alumnus, a member of the 6th class of Fellows. I became a TEAK Fellow the summer after my 7th-grade year of school and participated actively in the program through college. I am extremely grateful for all of the opportunities that TEAK has granted me, including going to Broadway shows as a teenager, attending Phillips Exeter Academy, traveling to Spain through Experiment in International Living, exploring the mountains of Washington state through Outward Bound, obtaining my first internship at age 15, and introducing me to intelligent and motivated fellows who are still some of my closest friends. These experiences and relationships helped me gain a better understanding of who I was, who I wanted to be, and what kind of work and life I wanted to pursue.


I am so excited to be running my first marathon in support of a program that has tremendously impacted my life. Every dollar raised will go directly towards the TEAK Fellowship, granting educational opportunities and preparing students to succeed and lead in their schools, professions, and communities. 


Favorite Memories at TEAK: Learning and building strong relationships with other fellows during Summer Institute. Although the work was challenging and I did not always appreciate doing hours of homework in the summer, looking back I appreciate the summers so much as those summers helped me become a better writer, more analytical thinker, and due to all of the fun I had with fellows and instructors. 


Advice for current TEAK Fellows: Take advantage of all of the learning and other opportunities that you get at your schools, try new things, and be open-minded!


Support me as I run 26.2 miles through the 6 boroughs. Visit my page here: https://donate.teakfellowship.org/fundraiser/1365963


Get in touch with Joana:



Alumni! Have news to share? Let us know! Email [email protected]