Matthew Greene '10 Awarded Fulbright Scholarship to Czech Republic
For Matthew Greene '10, it was simple. He loved the Czech Republic. A friend had taken him to visit during the spring of 2009, and Greene was enamored by the country. He wanted to go back and learn more; he wanted to engrain himself in the country, he wanted to learn Czech, and he wanted to help the Czech people better understand Americans. He wanted be a teacher for a year, and he knew that a prestigious Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship would enable him to do that. He knew it was competitive, but he also knew that if he had just as much to offer the Czech Republic as it had to offer him, he stood a chance to do well in the competition.
Now, he's preparing his lesson plans. Greene was awarded one of two Fulbright English Teaching Assistantships in the Czech Republic for the 2010-2011 academic year. He is one of four UVM students to be awarded a Fulbright this year, and will work as an English teaching assistant for two high schools in the small Czech city of Havlickuv Brod, located in the middle of the country.
Greene, a Westerly, Rhode Island native, European Studies major and avid linguist, first visited the Czech Republic while he was studying abroad in Austria during the 2008-2009 academic year. It was the language that appealed to him first; he already spoke German and Italian, but be begged his Czech friends to teach him their language. Learning the language enabled him to learn a lot more about the Czech people, and he become fascinated by Czech history and culture. He also recognized that the Czech people were just as enthusiastic about learning his language as he was about learning theirs.
He was determined to find a way to get some experience in the Czech Republic when he returned to UVM in the fall of 2009, He applied for the Fulbright Teaching Assistantship because, he says, the opportunity to teach would enable him to help students learn more about Americans and American culture while perfecting their English. He couldn't pass up the chance to participate in such a unique cultural exchange while he worked on perfecting his Czech.
Greene, along with Hannah LeMieux '10, is the first UVM student to win a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship. He is also one of only two Americans on a Fulbright who will be teaching in the Czech Republic during the 2010-2011 academic year. The English Teaching Assistantship enables U.S. students to spend a year living and teaching abroad. It is one of the fastest-growing prestigious scholarships, and is available in over 40 countries.
Greene is one of over 1,500 U.S. citizens who will travel abroad for the 2010-2011 academic year through the Fulbright U.S. Student Program. The Fulbright Program is the flagship international educational exchange program sponsored by the U.S. government and is designed to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries. The primary source of funding for the Fulbright Program is an annual appropriation made by the U.S. Congress to the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Participating governments and host institutions, corporations and foundations in foreign countries and in the United States also provide direct and indirect support. Recipients of Fulbright grants are selected on the basis of academic or professional achievement, as well as demonstrated leadership potential in their fields. The Program operates in over 155 countries worldwide.
His intercultural experiences will not end with his Fulbright year. Greene plans on returning to the U.S. to pursue a graduate degree focusing on Central European Studies, specifically related to Austria and the Czech Republic. He eventually plans to enter the Foreign Service and work as a representative of the U.S. in a Central European country.
Last modified June 02 2010 04:29 PM