Home Country: United States
Back home in the United States, Elizabeth is a student tutor at her college, providing weekly support for students in English and French. Having participated in two service trips to Ghana to provide after-school support, Elizabeth has experience in teaching English abroad, and is planning to join the Peace Corps after college. She is a regular contributor to her college newspaper and is active on social media in sharing her passion for environmental and ethical veganism. Elizabeth’s enthusiasm for international development and community service, teamed with her love of blogging sharing stories, will ensure she can offer an insightful account of her volunteering experience to support future volunteers.
Why are you passionate about teaching English abroad?
Helping others and traveling have always been passions of mine. Community service was engrained into my life by family and it is one of the core values at my high school. I have been lucky enough to go to a service-oriented and globally aware high school where I was educated and made aware of a lot of issues in the world. I know how much English proficiency can help someone to succeed and make a better life for themselves. I have also had the amazing opportunity of traveling to Ghana on a service trip with my school and it was a life changing experience. In college, I am going to major in international development and I hope to eventually join the Peace Corps to teach English abroad. With all of the problems in the world, I cannot imagine dedicating my life to anything but trying to fix them! My favorite saying is, “The craziest thing you can do is nothing”. I have been lucky enough to be born into a good life and receive a great education and I want to do everything to share this.
What experience/skills can you apply to teaching English abroad?
I am part of “Stutors” at my school which is a group of selected students who tutor their peers once a week and I tutor in French and English. For English, I often help students with essays and proof read papers and for French I help with grammar, conjugations, and writing as well. With French, we have a no English policy at my school so you can’t speak in English in our Language Center or with anything involving that class so I have learned how to communicate with kids in lower levels and help them improve which I think would be useful when teaching English abroad. I have also been on two service trips to a children’s home in Ghana and every day after school, I helped the kids with their homework and most of them knew English as a second language. My experience with international travel will also help in making an easy transition into another culture.
Why do you believe you will be effective in teaching English abroad?
As mentioned before, I do have some experience in teaching languages and in international volunteering and this is something that I truly am passionate about. It is something that I will continue in college and I hope to possibly make a career out of it. This may sound cheesy, but I think when you are passionate about something, you are always better at it because you’re driven for the right reasons.
What are you looking to gain from the experience?
I want to make a life and career out of this type of experience and I know this will only make me more prepared. Being able to take the TEFL course will allow me to improve my skills and become a good English teacher. I know that I would continue to use this skill and teach English abroad after this experience. This will also allow me to experience another culture and make me more globally aware and connected.