Olivia Smith, who graduated in June of 2017 with a B.A. degree in Sociology and a minor in Spanish, is one of eleven students at the University of Washington to be awarded a Fulbright scholarship. Olivia will travel to Mexico, where she will join Fulbright's English Teaching Assistant Program. Olivia was an outstanding student in the department and a finalist for the 2017 Woolston Award, the department's highest honor for undergraduates. Throughout her time at UW, Olivia was an unusually engaged member of the University community. She was active in UW's First Year Programs, where she served as both an Orientation Leader and FIG Leader, and in the Black Student Union, serving as president during her senior year. Building on her experience tutoring students through a Sociology practicum (Soc 402), Olivia worked with the UW Dream project to design and teach a course that offered a critical look at schooling in the US.
After her first experience overseas during a summer study abroad program in Spain, Olivia decided she wanted to find more opportunities to explore life outside of the US. Combining her love of travel with her passion for education, the English Teaching Assistant program that Olivia will participate in places Fulbrighters in classrooms abroad to provide assistance to the local English teachers. ETA’s help teach English language while serving as cultural ambassadors for the U.S. While in Mexico, Olivia hopes to make valuable connections with students and strengthen her cultural awareness and competency. Upon returning, Olivia plans to attend graduate school to pursue a master’s in education or teaching.