“Knox taught me the importance of showing up and putting your best effort forward, even in the difficult mome...
Office of Communications
2 East South Street
Galesburg, IL 61401
Fourth Grade Bilingual/Dual Language Teacher
Majors in International Studies and Education, Minor in Spanish
You recently spent a year in Taiwan through the Fulbright Foundation. What did you do?
I was a TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) advisor for Fulbright Taiwan Foundation for scholarly exchange. I supported English teaching assistants and their counterparts, local English teachers. I traveled around Taiwan giving professional development workshops, observing and conferencing with teachers, and doing research.
Can you give an overview of your life after Knox so far?
After Knox, I taught as a bilingual and dual-language elementary school teacher in Illinois for a couple of years. I then decided to enroll in a Peace Corps Master's International degree program at the Monterey Institute of International Studies to get a degree in TESOL and language program administration. I did my first year of graduate school, then was placed in Honduras as a youth development volunteer. Around nine months into my service, all Peace Corps Volunteers were evacuated due to violence in the country. After a couple of months, they decided to officially close Honduras as a Peace Corps country and I was granted completion of service.
During this in-between time in the U.S., I covered a bilingual first-grade maternity leave. While teaching, I was contacted by Peace Corps Response (a specialty branch of the Peace Corps) to apply for an English language specialist position in Mexico for a year. I served in Mexico teaching university-level English to engineering students and professors, editing work for publication, and teaching English as a foreign language to sixth graders at a local public elementary school.
After completing service in Mexico, I finished my master's and was hired at Arizona State University as full-time faculty in the American English and Culture department. I left ASU for the year-long contract with Fulbright and am now teaching fourth grade bilingual/one way dual language in the States.
What appeals to you about living and working internationally? When did you realized that was something you wanted to do?
My sophomore year at Knox, I studied abroad in Argentina and Spain. While abroad, I had a "light bulb moment" -- that I really liked living abroad. So I thought that teaching English seemed like a practical way to continue living abroad in the future. I found a program through Knox -- the Urban Education program through ACM in Chicago that offered an ESL certificate. That experience, working at a school where I was helping to support a bilingual bi-cultural identity, was a game-changer. My Urban Education advisor and the education department at Knox were so supportive that I was able to shift focus and graduate with an education major, along with bilingual and ESL endorsements.