Gehin awarded prestigious Fulbright grant

Extra: Rod Pritchard, Director of Marketing and Public Relations
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2014-06-12 09:30:36 - General

Coe College alumna Hilary Gehin has been awarded a prestigious Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship grant. The Fulbright award will allow Gehin to teach in Amasya, Turkey during the 2014-15 academic year.

Gehin graduated cum laude from Coe in 2012 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in biology. While at Coe, she was involved in Circle K, Alpha Lambda Delta, and Strata. She worked in the Coe Writing Center and was a member of the Colere editing team. Gehin studied abroad in Denmark and participated in May Term in Serbia and Turkey.

As an AmeriCorps member, she found a deep interest in teaching. Looking for an opportunity to live abroad and develop her teaching skills, Gehin spoke to Coe alumni and discovered the Fulbright program.

"The Fulbright is a great opportunity to teach abroad and create meaningful global connections. The program prepares its scholars to become globally minded ambassadors," said Gehin. "It offers full support to its scholars and the opportunity to take on leadership roles designing lessons."

In Turkey, Gehin will be teaching English at Amasya University designing and implementing lessons in speaking and reading English.

While Gehin's first priority is to immerse herself in the Turkish language and improve her fluency, she is enthused to learn more about the country’s culture.

"My goal is to engage in the Turkish culture and learn as much about the language, history and current events as I can," said Gehin. "Additionally, I hope to further develop my skills in teaching and communication."

From her Fulbright experience, Gehin hopes to create valuable connections between Midwestern American and Turkish cultures and backgrounds.

"I can bring my American experience as a Midwesterner and share my story with my students," said Gehin. "My biggest wish is to create open lines of communication through speaking and writing, helping each student find his or her own unique voice in English."

After completing her Fulbright, she hopes to pursue a career in ESL education or science writing.

Gehin says several Coe faculty members have substantially shaped her education, but she is particularly thankful to Biology Professors Randy Christensen and Paul Storer, Rhetoric Professor Robert Marrs, Theatre Professor Dennis Barnett, and Physics Professors Ugur Akgun and Steve Feller.

"My professors at Coe nurtured my love of science, writing and education. They taught me the importance of making global connections," said Gehin. "Ann Struthers was also a huge help with my Fulbright application." Professor Struthers serves as the college's Fulbright Program advisor.

A native of Madison, Wisconsin, Hilary is the daughter of Timothy and Teri Gehin.

Established in 1946 and sponsored by the United States Department of State, the Fulbright Program aims to increase mutual understanding between Americans and the peoples of other countries, through the exchange of persons, knowledge and skills. The Fulbright Program is the largest international exchange program, providing funding for students, scholars and professionals to undertake graduate study, advanced research and teaching. The Fulbright U.S. Student Program sends approximately 1,500 students per year to more than 140 countries.