Three Kennesaw State alumni receive Fulbright Awards
KENNESAW, Georgia (August 3, 2021) – Jaylen Jackson developed a love of languages as a student at Kennesaw State University, and he has now received a Fulbright scholarship to pursue his career goal of teaching English as a second language to adults.
“Being a Fulbright recipient gives me a great opportunity to gain experience and pursue my dream,” said Jackson, who will serve as an English teaching assistant at a university in Brazil for a year at from March. “I know a Fulbright is hard to come by, so I’m honored to be a part of it.”
Jackson, who graduated last year with a integrative studies diploma, is one of three Kennesaw State alumni who recently received a Fulbright to study or teach abroad.
Jaylen Jackson (Integrative Studies ’20)
Fulbright English Teaching Assistant Award, Brazil
Jaylen Jackson credits the first Spanish course he took at Kennesaw State to his interest in learning and teaching languages. He continued this pursuit by taking a study abroad trip to Peru and participating in an online language exchange program in which he had conversations with a student in Mexico who was practicing speaking English while that Jackson spoke Spanish.
“Everything I needed was readily available at KSU, and I always had the best teachers and the best experiences, no matter what course I took,” Jackson said. “I was lucky to have so many good influences throughout the Department of Foreign Languages and the Office of Education Abroad. ”
In Brazil, Jackson will help teach English to students while giving them an understanding of American culture. Jackson has completed his first year of a Masters program in Applied Linguistics, which he will resume after his year in South America.
Kaylee Walker (Communication 16)
Fulbright scholarship for studies / research, Spain
Studying for six weeks in Italy as a KSU student ignited Kaylee Walker’s passion for learning about other cultures and helping people through international initiatives. During this trip, she met her compatriot Owl and her future husband Perry Watkins, and the two have served together as Peace Corps volunteers in Panama, English teachers in Thailand and currently as full-time staff. at Peace Corps headquarters in Washington, DC
“My first time abroad really sparked something in me to want to learn more about other cultures, on a deeper level,” Walker said. “Fulbright really resonates with us because he has similar characteristics to the Peace Corps in that he doesn’t just go and live in another culture, but he creates those cross-cultural interactions of making friendships.” and teach people about our culture while learning theirs. ”
Walker will spend two years in Spain conducting research on refugee populations while earning his Masters in Global and International Studies from the University of Salamanca. His study will compare the immigration and asylum policies of the United States and Spain, focusing specifically on the reasons why so many refugees from Central and South America have emigrated to Spain in recent years. years.
Perry Watkins (Psychology ’14)
Fulbright English Teaching Assistant Award, Spain
Psychology Graduate Perry Watkins received a Fulbright Award for teaching English to students in Spain. However, he chose to accept a similar opportunity under a Spanish government program, the North American Language and Culture Ambassador Program, which will allow him to be in Salamanca with his wife.
Additionally, by accepting the other offer, Watkins will remain eligible to apply for a Fulbright towards the Masters in International Education he plans to pursue. Educating and helping others has been Watkins’ goal since he first traveled overseas, in the summer after his sophomore year at Kennesaw State, accompanying his mother when she was a translator at Guatemala.
“Education is my passion,” Watkins said. “Receiving the Fulbright, with all that it embodies – international education, community engagement, cultural exchange, collaboration with teachers – is an incredible feeling. ”
– Paul Floeckher
A leader in innovative teaching and learning, Kennesaw State University offers undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees to its more than 41,000 students. With 11 colleges on two Atlanta metro campuses, Kennesaw State is a member of the Georgia University System and the second largest university in the state. The university’s vibrant campus culture, diverse population, strong global ties, and entrepreneurial spirit attract students from across the region and from 126 countries around the world. Kennesaw State is a Carnegie-designated doctoral (R2) research institute, which places it among an elite group of just 6% of U.S. colleges and universities with an R1 or R2 status. For more information visit kennesaw.edu.