EASTON, Pa., April 28, 2006—Emily Groves ’05 will be spending the 2006-07 academic year in Germany working as a teacher’s assistant and conducting independent research, thanks to a Fulbright Teaching Assistantship.
Groves, who graduated last May with an A.B. English degree, will be teaching English, American studies and British studies part-time each week during the school year. During the rest of her time overseas, she will research the relationships and stereotypes generated through German and American media, particularly film, and how these stereotypes influence the other country. She also expects to be involved in volunteer projects through her host school.
“I am very excited to receive this reward because it is such a great opportunity to develop my understanding of teaching, international relations and the German lifestyle and culture,” she says.
Groves has studied German off-and-on for the past six years, culminating in an intense year of personal lessons with Margarete Lamb-Faffelberger, associate professor and head of foreign languages and literatures, during her senior year. Although she has a strong background in German, Groves has never been as immersed in the language as she will be during the trip.
“I know that my knowledge of the German language and culture will be intensely tested next year as it never has been before, but I’m excited for the challenge,” says Groves.
She became focused on the study of German during her sophomore year after taking Lamb-Faffelberger’s Gender, Identity, and German Film class.
“This course sparked my interest in film and re-awakened my interest in studying German,” Groves says. “She was a great inspiration to me to keep studying German and German culture and encouraged me to apply for this scholarship.”
The grant program will begin for Groves with training in Altenberg, Germany Sept. 4-8 and will officially end June 30, 2007. Her research will culminate in a comprehensive article and will focus on German and American manipulation of the media.
“The media plays such an important and influential role in national and international society, fueling cultural interpretations and stereotypes that may not always be accurate,” she says. “I plan to examine how popular media in particular affects cross-cultural views.”
Groves also believes this experience will act as a sort of litmus test for her future career.
“My experience as a writing assistant at Lafayette really gave me great exposure to the possibilities of teaching,” Groves says. “I think that this position will allow me to have the most direct teaching role I have ever had, ultimately helping me to decide if this is the path I want to take. However, I am also very excited about this opportunity because of the exposure I will have in a new lifestyle, culture and a different language.”
While at Lafayette, Groves was a Marquis Scholar, a writing assistant, and played on the club field hockey team. She was a member of the 2004-05 Technical Clinic team, which worked on the redevelopment of Easton and Phillipsburg’s riverfront area. She also took part in the January 2003 interim trip to Kenya and Tanzania, studied abroad in Edinburgh, Scotland in 2004, and went to Honduras during the 2005 Alternative School Break Program.
Since graduation, she has been doing independent research and writing for Boston University’s Institute for Leading in a Dynamic Economy and she worked two internships in New York City. One was in public relations for The Fresh Air Fund and the other in development at Playwrights Horizons, an off-Broadway theater. She also spent a few weeks working in a Red Cross shelter in Alexandria, La. after Hurricane Katrina hit the Gulf Coast.
Groves is one of 11 Lafayette students to have received Fulbright grants in the past seven years. The other recipients are Matt Verbyla ’06 (civil engineering), Teva Miller ’04 (A.B. English/German), Hart Feuer ’05 (A.B. economics and business/German), Shara Gregory ’04 (A.B. international affairs/German), Michael Lestingi ’04 (B.S mechanical engineering; A.B. international studies/Russian & East European Studies), Jessica Coakley ’03 (A.B. international affairs/economics & business), Tarik Ghanim ’03 (B.S. electrical and computer engineering; A.B. international studies), Sarah Glacel ’01 (A.B. Russian & East European Studies/international affairs), Sarah Eremus ’00 (A.B. Spanish/Japanese studies), and Gregory Domber ’97 (A.B. history/philosophy).
Spearheaded by Arkansas Senator J. William Fulbright, the Fulbright Program was established by Congress in 1946 to demonstrate U.S. commitment to democratic values worldwide. The program aims to increase mutual understanding among nations through educational and cultural exchange, strengthen U.S. ties with other nations, and promote international cooperation.
Copyright © 2006, Lafayette College.