Franklin HS counselor Corey Goldstein poses with his “Wall of Students,” featuring teens he’s worked with since 1988.

Every year, hundreds of community partners help Team Read to be a success. This month, we spoke with one of our long-time supporters, Corey Goldstein, a counselor at Franklin High School who helps Team Read to thrive throughout the school year. Corey refers students to tutor in the program and he is also a financial supporter of Team Read.

How did you become involved with Team Read?

My involvement with Team Read started years ago when I was still a counselor at Washington Middle School. One of my students, Miyuki, told me about Team Read and I knew how much the program meant to her. (Note: Miyuki tutored for Team Read for 5 years and is now completing her degree at Western Washington University.) Something like Team Read can make a real difference for a student. I was inspired, so I had a birthday party where I asked people to bring a donation for Team Read instead of a birthday gift.

Team Read is beautiful on so many levels. Not only are these kids getting in more reading time, they are looking up to a middle or high school student and getting a good role model along the way.

How does working for Team Read impact teens?

Teenagers have the opportunity to get outside themselves and practice some altruism in a very practical way. They are giving up time to interact with a young child. When a little kid looks up and smiles at you, how could that not make a teen feel good?

What challenges do teens face these days when entering the work force?

Many teens are still building necessary soft skills: problem-solving skills, communication skills, initiative, asking for help, and consulting with adults. These are all things kids get in Team Read.

Team Read makes students very attractive to colleges and businesses. Colleges want more well-rounded students with communications skills, kids who are altruistic. Team Read creates a well-rounded student.

How did you become interested in a career in education? 

When I was in high school, I heard about kids living on the streets in Seattle. I couldn’t understand why kids would need to do this, so I volunteered at a place called Youth Eastside Services. YES has been around since the 60s for kids who are out in the streets.

The more I volunteered, the more I realized I wanted to work directly with youth. I attended the School of Social Work at UW and it got me started on my path.