UI student receives a Fulbright U.S. Student Program award for an English Teaching Assistantship to Russia

Samantha Korns

Name: Samantha Korns
Hometown:  St. Louis, Missouri
Type of Fulbright Award: Fulbright English Teaching Assistant Award
Degree and Field of Study: B.A. International Studies, Russian, Political Science, 2016

Research/Teaching: I was awarded an English Teaching Assistantship to Russia. With my bachelor's degree in the social sciences, I will help provide Russian students with a broad knowledge of the United States, including topics such as history, civics, and government. I will use my entrepreneurial knowledge from my Advanced Business Planning internship to lead discussions on how to evaluate a business idea as well as how to master an "elevator pitch." As a student of jiu-jitsu, I am looking forward to practicing Russian Sambo which is a type of martial arts native to Russia.

What drew you to this field of study? My freshman year of college I befriended a Russian speaker who piqued my interest in the Russian language, culture, and history. I started studying Russian soon after and I traveled to St. Petersburg, Russia in the summer of 2016. In my free time, I thoroughly enjoy teaching. Whether that is being a Girls on the Run mentor or being an in-class tutor for English as a second language course. I knew that I wanted to return to Russia as an English teaching assistant, creating cross-cultural understanding and representing the United States through Fulbright.

How do you envision this will change your life? I presume that being an English teaching assistant in Russia will change my life immensely. In the future, I plan to become an international lawyer specializing in diplomacy potentially working for the U.S State Department or United Nations. Living in Russia for an academic year will provide me with the cultural understanding and language skills to interact with Russians to work collaboratively in law, business and international relations. 
Likewise, I hope to create long lasting relationships with my Russian students and community members that are built on understanding and the reciprocity of language and knowledge. 

What advice do you have for future students interested in pursuing a Fulbright award? My advice for future students would be to really evaluate your country's description on the Fulbright website. Each country has their own description of what they are looking for. Some countries prefer Master's candidates while some prefer that you have a social science background or have a strong command of their native language. While it is important to stay true to yourself when writing your essays, it is also beneficial to add in details about what your country is looking for as well.
 

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