We are thrilled to announce that Alex Homes, one of our MAT in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) students, has received a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant (ETA) award.

The Fulbright English Teaching Assistant programs place grantees in schools overseas to supplement local English language instruction and to provide a native speaker presence in the classrooms. Alex plans to complete his placement in Poland.

Alex joined the TESOL MAT program in the summer of 2021, did his student teaching at the Newcomer School, and plans to finish the TESOL MAT program later this summer 2022.

“For me, this award is a reflection of the supportive community of family, friends, and colleagues that I am beyond grateful to have around me. I am excited for the opportunity to share this recognition with my community, and represent them and UNCG in Poland.”

Prior to enrolling at UNC Greensboro, Alex graduated from UNC Chapel Hill in 2021 where he majored in Advertising and Public Relations with a minor in Spanish translation and interpretation. One of the highlights of my undergraduate career was working at the YMCA, where I assisted with afterschool programs, sports programs, and summer camp.

Help us in congratulating Alex on this amazing accomplishment!

Please join us in congratulating Kiarra Webb-Coe, a current senior in the Dual Elementary and Special Education Program, and the newest winner of the Provost Student Excellence Award 2022!

This award is the highest academic honor given to undergraduates at UNCG and recognizes Kiarra’s academic excellence as a student both in and out of the classroom.

When asked about this award, Kiarra shared the following:

I am beyond thrilled to have received this award, and I am honored to have been recognized and nominated by Dr. Bost, who has played a crucial role in helping me become the person I am today. One of my proudest accomplishments has been being able to attend a 4-year university, and being able to be the first in my immediate family to attend college has been challenging, yet very rewarding. I often found myself questioning whether I would be capable of being a full-time student, working, volunteering, alongside having a social and personal life.  I have devoted a great deal of my time to my academics and employment experiences, along with involving myself in extracurricular activities. I value being involved within my community and peers, while enhancing my leadership skills. Receiving this award has reassured me that I am moving toward my passions, excelling within my personal and professional development, and reminded me to keep learning, growing, and continuing to prosper. 

Full story, written by Alexandra McQueen, is available from UNCG News

Yahira Robinson was just 12 years old when she knew – seriously knew – she wanted to be a Spartan.

“I truly believe in dance therapy and the power of kinesthetic movement not only to teach people, but to help people.”

This research inspired Robinson to pursue a second degree in elementary education so she could make a difference in more people’s lives by implementing kinesthetic learning in the traditional classroom, not just in the dance studio. 

Her School of Education faculty introduced her to a new form of kinesthetic learning known as integrated dance – teaching traditional subjects like math, science, and reading through dance movements. For example, a lesson on the water cycle could incorporate jumps into the air to exemplify water being evaporated.

Yahira Robinson

“My research on integrated dance was really the turning point for me because I could be in the classroom and still teach dance, while also expanding my reach and impact by teaching math, science, or English at the same time. It was a way to combine my two passions of education and dance to make teaching fun for kids, and it’s accommodating to a lot of different learning styles. I think a lot of times, students can get stuck at their desks, so allowing them to get up, flourish, and learn through movement is really rewarding.”

And Robinson has been able to see the benefits of implementing integrated dance into the classroom first-hand this last semester. In January, she began teaching sixth-grade science full-time at Northern Guilford Middle School.

“It’s been a unique experience to be a student-teacher one day and a full-time teacher the next, but I’ve been so grateful for the opportunity, and it’s truly helped me realize my love for educating and inspiring the next generation.”

The Smiley Award supports global educational opportunities for current undergraduate and graduate students in the School of Education (SOE) at UNC Greensboro. SOE students who serve as outstanding Global Education Ambassadors through international or local engagement are encouraged to apply each Spring, particularly students who demonstrate leadership, innovation, and impact in both international and local settings based on both previous and proposed engagement activities. 

This year, the 2022 Smiley Award was presented to Kervins Clement (CED doctoral student) and Hannah Ward (Teaching Fellow undergraduate student). 

In addition to Kervins Clement’s, a 3rd year doctoral student in the Department of Counseling and Educational Development, international impact experiences to support the Haitian and other minoritized populations, he has also contributed to his expertise in a variety of ways through his engagement in local communities.

Kervins Clement (CED) headshot

“It is a great honor for me to receive the SOE Global Ambassador Smiley Award. I would love to thank my wife Ashley, my high school sweetheart, for supporting and believing in me throughout my whole professional career and life. I also want to thank the other people in my life who believe in me and joined me in this unforgettable journey. It truly is a heartwarming experience to be recognized for the work that I have done and will continue to engage in. As a child of two immigrants who migrated from Haiti, I inherited a passion for people beyond the United States borders. Figuring out different ways to give back and support my Haitian community has been an important mission for me. Growing up in a low-income household within an underserved community developed my passion for marginalized people and communities. Providing support to both international and local communities is something that is near and dear to my heart. As a counselor and educator, I plan on continuing to find new ways to help and support these different communities. I created Clement Counseling and Consulting, PLLC to help me continue this life work. I typically get lost in the trenches, as it is easy to do the work that you are called to do and not worry about getting recognized for it. This award is a reminder and affirmation of the good work that I am doing. I also know my parents would be proud because I am living out the values that they have instilled in me. Thank you, School of Education (SOE), for selecting me for this prestigious award.”

Hannah will be going on a faculty-led program to London, England, where she plans to not only develop her own intercultural understandings, but also apply her enhanced knowledge and skills in future classrooms as a teacher. 

Hannah Ward headshot

“I am so grateful to have been selected as a 2022 Undergraduate Smiley Award Winner. Being selected for this is a great honor, and a blessing as I prepare to study abroad this summer. I am excited to get to see so many wonderful things and to study classic literature in the city where so much of it was written. While I am abroad, I hope to take advantage of all the opportunities that will be available to me. I am thrilled that I will get to share these experiences with other students who are considering studying abroad, and hope that I can inspire them. As a future teacher, I believe this experience will give me a more comprehensive understanding of the material I will teach to my students. In addition, I hope that sharing this experience will inspire my students to travel and to explore the world, as well as to find a passion for literature and writing. I hope having the opportunity to share my experiences with others will inspire them to explore the world, and provide me with support while I am abroad. I couldn’t be more excited or more thankful for this opportunity from the School of Education, and I look forward to getting started!”

Congratulations Kervins and Hannah!

Please join us in congratulating Kayla Baker, 4th Year PhD student in the School of Education’s (SOE) Department of Educational Leadership and Cultural Foundations (ELC). She was the winner of the Social Sciences, Education, and Business category in this year’s UNCG Graduate Research and Creativity Showcase. This event provided an opportunity for graduate students from across the disciplines to articulate the importance and impact of their scholarship with judges from the community. 

Kayla’s presentation entitled, “The Backbone is Speaking: Uplifting Black Women Voices on the Socialization of Black Youth” is about uplifting the voices of six Black women. This project explores what Black women teach Black youth and the why behind their socialization philosophies and strategies. It shares their perspectives on social messages sent to Black youth, the cultural role Black students perform, and strategies needed in order to dismantle the messages stunting Black student progress are analyzed as a means to inform the ways we can support, uplift, and empower Black youth. Dance choreography is used for symbolism, meaning, and purpose connected to the counter narratives shared through the women’s stories. Her work centered around a research-based performance piece that you can view here.

Kayla Baker presenting at UNCG Graduate Research and Creativity Showcase

“It was so great representing the ELC department during these poster presentations. I just recently defended my dissertation proposal and entered into candidacy last Monday, so to finish the week off Friday with this win was amazing!”

We are grateful to all of this year’s participants for sharing their amazing scholarship and helping to shine a spotlight on the importance of UNCG graduate education to our community, our state, and beyond. Please feel free to view more information about the showcase and see a complete listing of student Showcase submissions through their Showcase Table

See the UNCG News Article, Graduate Researchers Present ‘Scholarship that Matters’, for more information.