Erica Doe, MSW '12, receives Fulbright Award
Erica Doe is a 2012 graduate of the School of Social Work and received a Fulbright Award that has taken her to Johannesburg, South Africa in January. Her award falls under the Fulbright English Teaching Assistant Program. She is based at the University of the Witwatersrand's School of Education where she is responsible for leading lectures and student study groups, grading papers and exams, and conducting one-on-one meetings with students. She is teaching two courses, Language Methodologies and New Literacies for Teachers. She also assists in the Writing Center and on research projects.
Doe is in the process of starting a 'Sister Circle' at the Rosa Parks Library in Soweto with young women ages 14-17. "We will meet biweekly to discuss a different topic, including HIV/AIDS, sexual health, healthy relationships, college," says Doe. "Our sessions will include writing, either poetry or prose, to help them practice English reading, writing and speaking skills." The main purpose is to use the art of writing as a less intimidating way to address complex topics and express challenging thoughts and emotions. "If I am able to start the same group at Wits, I would eventually like to bring them together and add a mentorship piece, which may help make the groups sustainable. If not, my hope is that the older members of the group in Soweto will begin to serve as mentors to the younger girls."
The Fulbright U.S. Student Program is the largest U.S. exchange program offering opportunities for students and young professionals to undertake international graduate study, advanced research, university teaching, and primary and secondary school teaching worldwide. The program currently awards approximately 1,800 grants annually in all fields of study, and operates in more than 155 countries worldwide.