by Sara Curnow Wilson

As a tutor at the Temple University Writing Center, Kacie Hoagland (CLA ’17) is no stranger to the value of a second set of eyes during the revision process. When she decided to apply for a Fulbright English Teaching Award, she knew she needed to use all the resources available to her.

“I spent months writing and revising my personal statements,” she says. “The application process involved a lot of work, but I had so much support through the fellowship advising office that I didn't have to go through any step alone.”

Hoagland met with Barbara Gorka, Director of Scholar Development and Fellowships Advising, tutors and even other Fulbright applicants to enhance her application.

“The scariest part was not knowing if all the work would even pay off in the end,” she adds.

Luckily for Hoagland—and her future students—it did. She will move to Spain this fall to spend a year as an English teaching assistant in the Galicia region of Spain.

My experience at Temple sort of naturally led me on this path to want to move to Spain to teach after graduation, and the support of everyone around me helped to actually make it possible.

“As an English and Spanish major at Temple, it kind of speaks for itself how my studies have prepared me for something like this,” Hoagland says. “I have learned how to critically think and communicate my ideas in both languages, and I have been inspired by the dedication of so many professors to help their students learn.”

Hoagland has been getting experience and inspiration outside of the classroom, too. In addition to working in the writing center, she studied abroad in Spain and has volunteered as an ESL teacher in Philadelphia. 

“Last summer, I volunteered with the Nationalities Service Center in Center City as a teacher to a class of adults from all over the world,” she says. “It was an amazing experience because I was able to help them learn English in a way that would really benefit their lives here. It was all about community-based learning and giving them the skills to not only survive, but also get jobs, interact with others, and feel more connected with the culture here. I learned so much from working with these students, and I think it will help me a lot when trying to integrate lessons about American culture into my classrooms in Spain.”

Hoagland is not sure if her ultimate career goal is secondary education, higher education or something else entirely, but she is excited for her next stop.

“At this point, I'm really trying to just take advantage of this opportunity while I have it and see where it leads me next,” she says. “My experience at Temple sort of naturally led me on this path to want to move to Spain to teach after graduation, and the support of everyone around me helped to actually make it possible.”

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