The Birth of Togatutors

Describe a problem you’ve solved or a problem you’d like to solve. It can be an intellectual challenge, a research query, an ethical dilemma-anything that is of personal importance, no matter the scale. Explain its significance to you and what steps you took or could be taken to identify a solution.

I live in Saratoga, California: the sunny land of tutors, prep centers, and SAT classes. Everywhere you drive there are signs offering the best discounts, the best teachers, the best results. I always wondered, however, why my community didn’t offer any programs that helped students for free. Why had test prep become Big Business?

Questions like these that inspired me to create my own organization, Togatutors.

I established Togatutors in my junior year as a completely non-profit program, and I had one single goal: that every part of the program would be completely free. I wanted students from all over to be able to come in and get help without worrying about the cost.

Soon enough, I realized that these lofty goals had practical obstacles. In order for my program to succeed and expand, I needed three basic things: space, tutors and students. I told two of my friends about my idea, and we became the three official co-founders. We then recruited tutors from our school by determining and reaching out to those with the strongest skills in each subject. We also recruited a director of technology to build our website, a director of outreach who helped us recruit six more knowledgeable tutors, and academic directors for each subject we...

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