J’Nisha Little ’20 sits in front of a painting

J’Nisha Little ’20 (government & law and international affairs)

Fulbright English Teaching Assistant (ETA) grant

Summary: The ETA program in Uruguay takes place in two locations: the provinces and Montevideo, the capital city, for an urban experience. While I am in Uruguay, I will be working as an English teaching assistant, but I also hope to continue my education while I am there. There is an opportunity for me to take two courses. As my host country engagement, I would look to continue doing research. At Lafayette College, I worked as a research assistant for [Professor] Joshua Miller in the Government and Law Department looking at fashion as a form of politics and researching the politics of black hair. I hope to further investigate the roots of traditional Uruguayan wear and its use of shaping its history. 

The ETA program currently awards approximately 2,000 grants annually in all fields of study and operates in more than 140 countries worldwide. The Fulbright scholarship is competitive; they receive thousands of applications a year. 

The [grant application process] is strenuous and very stressful. You have to sell yourself in a short application that consists of two essays: a statement of grant purpose and a personal statement. There are three other questions that you have to answer in 200 words. I am pretty sure I wrote each essay at least five times. I remember sitting in Scott Hall the day the application was due, and a group of us were so panicked and making corrections. It was a difficult process, but it was definitely worth it. 

When I found out I received the scholarship, I was in complete shock. I was at a Pistons basketball game and I was checking my email. I know I shouldn’t be checking my email during a game, but I was so excited I started crying. It felt like all of my hard work was finally paying off. Fulbright is an amazing opportunity, and being picked just meant so much. [At the time,] I wasn’t sure exactly what my next steps were, but I knew that Fulbright is a great one and will allow me to start the next chapter. 

J’Nisha Little ’20Anticipated highlight of the experience: I am ready to grow and see a new part of the world, having never been to South America before. I look forward to making new connections with people and understanding the culture. I cannot wait to further look into Uruguay’s education system, as they have free higher education and high literacy rates. I want to know why they are so successful and see where the U.S. can improve. 

Fulbright will allow me to continue to improve my fluency in the Spanish language. I also will be doing something that I care about. I love working with children and helping improve education disparities. English is one of the most widely spoken languages in the world. Giving a child an opportunity to communicate effectively, to travel, to form a connection, to understand and see another person’s culture is something that I can give by teaching English. 

How will your experience benefit you in the future? This experience will benefit me in so many ways. I love to travel and really immerse myself in cultures, and Fulbright gives me the opportunity to do so. It will allow me to continue my development of the Spanish language. It also is a chance for me to really grow as a person. I went to boarding school before Lafayette, so I know what it is like to live on my own, and I have traveled abroad, but it’s different when you are alone for eight months and your family really cannot get to you. This experience will also open doors career-wise. One of the grant benefits is 12 months of noncompetitive eligibility (NCE) hiring status within the federal government. I hope to work for the United Nations doing education advocacy and policy work. I have accepted a job at Dublin School in Dublin, N.H., as assistant director of admissions. I start July 1 and will leave for Uruguay in March. When I return, I will go back to Dublin. 

Fulbright Scholars

  • Five Lafayette students were named Fulbright Scholars, the largest U.S. student exchange program offering opportunities to study, research, and teach in more than 140 countries worldwide (Bryan Cocco ’20, Henry Hinchey ‘20, J’Nisha Little ‘20, Mia Coutinho ‘20, Leah Epstein ‘20). Four additional students were named alternates (Tedi Beemer ‘20, Talia Baddour ‘20, Lexi Long ‘20, Yazmin Baptiste ‘20) out of the 23 Lafayette students who applied and 13 who were named semi-finalists.    

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1 Comment

  1. Rosemary Iovieno Jamars mom says:

    Your mom did a very good job raising you. You don’t know me but I know you excellent job, keep it up Rosemary your mom’s friend
    God bless you

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