In the annual ranking of colleges and universities contributing the greatest number of graduates to its teaching corps, Teach for America ranked UC Santa Barbara at No. 20.

Thirty-five UCSB graduates have been selected this year to work as beginning teachers in public schools in low-income communities across the country.

Teach for America corps members are top college graduates and professionals who commit to teach for two years in urban and rural public schools, and become lifelong leaders in the pursuit of educational opportunities for all students.

Teach for America recruits on more than 600 college campuses, seeking seniors and graduates from all academic majors and backgrounds, who have demonstrated achievement, perseverance and leadership.

This year marks the first time more than 10,000 first- and second-year corps members will be teaching in high-need classrooms, representing a 10 percent increase over last year’s total corps size. The 5,800 first-year corps members earned an average grade point average of 3.54, and represent more than 1,500 colleges and universities across the nation. They will lead high-need classrooms in 46 regions that span 36 states and the District of Columbia.

“This ranking illustrates the strong public service spirit among UCSB undergraduates, as well as their exceptional preparation across the disciplines,” said Jane Close Conoley, professor of education and dean of UCSB’s Gevirtz Graduate School of Education. “Our undergrads have both a passion to make a difference in the world, and the benefit of a University of California education in their majors. Both of these make our students most attractive to Teach for America.”

“We are grateful to the outstanding colleges and universities that cultivate graduates with leadership skills and determination to address one of our nation’s greatest injustices –– the disparity in educational opportunity between children in low-income communities and their wealthier peers,” said Wendy Kopp, chief executive officer and founder of Teach for America. “These corps members bring a diversity of experiences and accomplishments to the classroom, and they all share a powerful commitment to work toward solving this problem.”