Dollars and “Sense”

Urban Teachers, simply put, is an investment in you. Your tuition goes to providing tailored coursework, individualized coaching, and dedicated local program support for 4 years. We are about value and there are no short-cuts to developing elite, culturally competent teachers. The information below is to help you better understand this investment in dollars and “sense.” 

The dollars: Below is a breakdown of our program costs and corresponding income to you.   The salary figures represent average resident stipends and teacher salaries, both of which vary across our cities to reflect the cost of living. Most of our participants use federal student loans to pay for program costs and living expenses. Such loans can be offset during the program by grants and scholarships and, upon program completion and continued employment as a teacher, can be addressed through federal and state loan forgiveness programs. Below is a “typical breakdown” of a candidate. The tuition is the same in each city we operate but the stipends, salaries, grants and other payments vary between each city. To find more detail about your city of interest, please visit our Info Center.

1The residency financial compensation ranges from $28,000 to $40,000 and is dependent on city and district placement. Similarly, the full-time teaching salary, health benefits, and opportunities for additional pay vary between school districts.  Please see each city’s financial breakdown for more local information
2 Signing Bonus – All accepted Cohort 2023 applicants who have 1) signed their letters of intent, 2) completed their enrollment into American University will receive a $1000 signing bonus
3Transitional Assistance – All accepted Cohort 2023 who have signed their letters of intent and are planning to matriculate into Urban Teachers will receive $2000 to aid in their transition to Urban Teachers and may apply for additional funds up to a total of $4000 (i.e. $2000 additional dollars) through a needs-based application process
4Learn more about Teach Grants; AmeriCorps, All payments made using the Segal Education Award are subject to federal tax in the year each payment is made. Learn more about AmeriCorps; Only participants identifying as Black or African-American qualify for the UNCF Black Educators Fellowship. Learn more about the UNCF Black Educators Fellowship
5The lifetime learning credit offers a credit of 20 percent of up to $10,000 in expenses, for a maximum credit of $2,000. The tuition and fees deduction allows you to deduct $4,000. Since it’s a deduction, you have to multiply the deduction by your tax rate to figure the savings. For example, if you fall in the 30 percent tax bracket, a $4,000 deduction saves you $1,200.
6Learn more about federal loan forgiveness 

* Total Compensation refers to the residency stipend from your school plus an additional amount (in some cities) to address cost of living disparities and ensure equity across all school partners.

The sense: We believe there are no shortcuts to becoming a great teacher and the cost of our program reflects the unmatched clinical experience, coursework, coaching and wrap-around support we provide. Here is a breakdown of how much more Urban Teacher provides versus typical teacher preparation.


I am just overwhelmed with gratitude because the UNCF Black Educators Scholarship is going to help me out so much in the next four years. Taking on a grant of thousands of dollars is something unimaginable, honestly. I’m a father so I have to sacrifice time, but now I don’t have to sacrifice the money, as well.

Casey Grimes, Cohort 2020, DC

Financial Aid Options

Apply for Federal Aid: Urban Teachers participants may apply for financial aid for the upcoming academic year by completing the FAFSA prior to the start of summer coursework. For more information, contact the financial aid office at American University.

Seek an alternative loan: Private educational loans (alternative loans) are credit-based loans provided by nationally recognized lending or banking institutions to eligible students. For more information refer to the information provided by American University.