Susquehanna Student Accepts Award to Teach in France
Published on May 9, 2014
Susquehanna University’s Nicole Powers, a member of the class of 2014 from Lititz, Pa., was awarded a Teaching Assistant Program in France (TAPIF) award and will spend a year teaching English in Poitiers, France. The award is considered a partial Fulbright scholarship and Powers is Susquehanna’s eighth Fulbright awardee in two years. Susquehanna boasts the third-best placement rate for Fulbright awards for 2013 among liberal arts institutions in Pennsylvania and has a dedicated program in place to identify and nurture potential applicants.
Powers, a double major in creative writing and French, is looking forward to getting firsthand experience teaching while also further exploring French culture after spending a semester in Strasbourg as part of Susquehanna’s Global Opportunities (GO) program.
“When I came in as a first-year student, I wasn’t a French major and I added it my second semester, not even realizing I would have to spend a full semester abroad as a major,” Powers said. “But I’m so glad I did because it forced me into something that became a great experience. It really did shape what I’m doing after graduation because it led me to apply for the Fulbright.”
Powers was recommended for TAPIF after applying for a Fulbright scholarship this year. The TAPIF award is considered a partial Fulbright and still allows Powers an opportunity to see the world, sharpen her French-language skills and take a breath after graduating from Susquehanna to contemplate graduate school.
“I look at this as an experience to aid in what I know and what I’ve done. It can only help in giving me more things to think about, people to see, places to go,” Powers said. “I wanted to do something like this and get real-life experience before jumping back into school. I think I’ll have more energy when I go back.”
TAPIF is a joint initiative of the French Ministry of Education, the Centre international d'études pédagogiques (CIEP) and the Cultural Services of the French Embassy. The program's goal is to strengthen English-language instruction in French schools by establishing a native speaker presence, while also providing American Francophiles with excellent teaching experience and firsthand knowledge of French language and culture.
“I’ll be spending between 12 and 15 hours a week in a classroom and I’ll be helping at the secondary level,” Powers said. “I’ll be either helping the teacher with the whole class or in small conversation groups.”