Four Rhodes seniors have been selected to receive Fulbright U.S. Student Awards for the 2016-2017 academic year. They are Paul Burdette (Germany), Esther Kang (Malaysia), Elizabeth Poston (Ecuador), and Jacob Turner (Argentina). They will serve as English Teaching Assistants in their assigned countries.
The highly prestigious Fulbright U.S. Student Program provides grants for individually designed study/research projects or for English Teaching Assistantships. The program facilitates cultural exchange through direct interaction on an individual basis in the classroom, field, home, and in routine tasks, allowing the grantee to gain an appreciation of others’ viewpoints and beliefs, the way they do things, and the way they think.
Paul Burdette is an English and German major from Germantown, TN. He serves as a German peer tutor at Rhodes, and in the summer of 2015 he studied at the Universität Koblenz-Landau in Germany as well as served as an assistant English teacher at Otto-Hahn Gymnasium (high school), leading classroom discussions and activities through lesson plans designed to help students become fluent in English. In January, Burdette had the opportunity to learn what it is like to be a foreign language teacher locally at St. Agnes School. There, he shadowed a French instructor as an extern and taught French lessons. Burdette is a graduate of Christian Brothers High School in Memphis.
Esther Kang is an international studies and history major from Dallas, TX. During the 2014-2015 academic year as a Buckman Fellow studying at Yonsei University in South Korea, Kang served as a research assistant for the Korea Institute of Public Administration, participating in projects in international development and performance evaluation. While abroad, she has also worked as an English tutor and participated in programs to improve education systems in Indonesia and Cambodia, which inspired her to apply for the Fulbright. On campus, Kang is a senior fellow in the Admission Office, working in a professional capacity to guide prospective students and families during their college search. Kang is a graduate of Rabun Gap-Nacoochee School in Rabun Gap, GA.
Elizabeth Poston, who is from Franklin, TN, is pursuing a double degree in Spanish and mathematics and a minor in Latin American studies. In 2014, she served as a missions intern with Inca Link International, which has service sites in Ecuador that includes orphanages, a home for pregnant teens, and a center for survivors of trafficking. She took part in a Rhodes Maymester in Cuenca, Ecuador, in 2013 and was a Buckman Fellow in Valencia, Spain, the spring of 2015. Locally, Poston started working at Su Casa Family Ministries last summer as a Rhodes Summer Service Fellow, and she continues to be an intern there, teaching English as a Second Language to Hispanic adults.
Jacob Turner, an international studies major from Atlanta, GA, spent the summer of 2015 as a study abroad intern in Argentina conducting independent research on human trafficking legislation and preventative measures. He also attended and participated in conferences and meetings in the Argentine Senate with top legal professionals in the field. The prior summer at Duke University, he assisted in instructing college-level political science and history courses for gifted high-school-aged youth. In addition, he has published an article in Agora: Journal for Undergraduate Scholarly Papers in which two historical characters explore the meaning of virtue and nobility. Turner is a graduate of Riverwood International Charter School.
(in the photo l-r, Paul Burdette, Esther Kang, Elizabeth Poston, Jacob Turner)