Three Agnes Scott Students Receive Prestigious Fulbright Scholarships

Friday, April 29, 2011

Three Agnes Scott College students have been awarded U.S. Fulbright Fellowships, a prestigious scholarship to research or teach abroad.

Agnes Scott’s Fulbright recipients this year are Breana Jones ’10, Esther Wallace ’10 and Ashley Williams ’11.
Breana Jones
“It is so exciting to see our top students being recognized by Fulbright,” said Christine Cozzens, Fulbright program adviser and the Charles A. Dana Professor of English at Agnes Scott. “A Fulbright scholarship is a life-changing experience and a lifelong honor. Breana, Esther and Ashley were leaders while at Agnes Scott and will no doubt excel in the Fulbright program and in whatever professions they choose to enter. They are already inspiring next year’s candidates to work hard on their Fulbright applications!”

The Fulbright Program is a flagship international educational exchange program sponsored by the U.S. government and designed “to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries.” Since its establishment in 1946 the Fulbright Program has provided almost 300,000 participants—chosen for their academic merit and leadership potential—with the opportunity to study, teach and conduct research, exchange ideas and contribute to finding solutions to shared international concerns.

Jones, with a degree in religious studies and sociology, received an English Teaching Assistantship (ETA) to teach English in Indonesia.

During her time at Agnes Scott, Jones served in a variety of student leadership positions and parlayed her leadership skills into an internship with the Georgia Justice Project, where she helped organize a back-to-school fundraiser to provide backpacks and school supplies to children in need.

“I want to teach in Indonesia because I am fascinated by the country’s diverse cultural traditions, educational initiatives and its drive to become a secular democracy,” Jones said. “Even more compelling is the way all these pieces are balanced by what is the largest Muslim nation. Serving within an educational system influenced by Islam will allow me to immerse myself in a completely different approach to life while having the chance to share the lessons I have learned.”
Esther Wallace
Jones also has a strong interest in public health and plans to volunteer for a public health organization while teaching in Indonesia.

Wallace, with a degree in Asian studies, was awarded an ETA to teach in Taiwan. She recently completed her Teaching English as a Foreign Language certification. Wallace studied Mandarin at Agnes Scott and looks forward to using what’s she’s learned in Taiwan.

“I wound up falling in love with the language,” Wallace said. “Fulbright is a great opportunity to use my language skills. I knew it was something I was interested in.”

Wallace also plans to study Buddhism while in Taiwan. She hopes to attend divinity school after her year in Taiwan and focus on projects that can bring together people of different faiths.

Williams, an art history major with a minor in French, received an ETA to teach in Morocco. Her love of teaching was kindled by working with fellow students as a writing tutor at the college’s Center for Writing and Speaking.

“Tutoring was a huge opportunity for me and taught me how to work with people and help them identify what they’re looking for in their writing and get it,” Williams said. “I knew I wanted to go abroad and do some teaching. I was accepted to the Peace Corps as well but was really hoping for a Fulbright. I can’t wait to leave and see where this takes me!”
Ashley Williams
She’s been studying two forms of Arabic spoken in Morocco to prepare for her stay in the country. Williams also plans to devote a portion of her time in Morocco to volunteer with an organization that preserves historical architecture and improves the safety of the buildings, a significant challenge in the country.

The Fulbright English Teaching Assistantships Program, an element of the Fulbright U.S. Student Program, places U.S. students as English teaching assistants in schools or universities overseas, thus improving foreign students’ English language abilities and knowledge of the United States while enhancing their own language skills and knowledge of the host country. ETAs may also pursue individual study/research plans in addition to their teaching responsibilities.

Agnes Scott College educates women to think deeply, live honorably and engage the intellectual and social challenges of their times. Students are drawn to Agnes Scott by its excellent academic reputation, exceptional faculty and metropolitan Atlanta location—offering myriad social, cultural and experiential learning opportunities. This highly selective liberal arts college is known for its diverse and dynamic intellectual community. Through SUMMIT, it provides every student, regardless of major, with an individualized course of study and co-curricular experiences that develop leadership abilities and understanding of complex global dynamics.