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Karlene Groshek (2015-2016 Turkey, English TA)
B.A. in Spanish, TEFL minor, December 2011

Karlene studied for a year in Murcia, Spain, and did her TEFL internship in Peru, as a UW-Eau Claire student. After graduation, she spent a year teaching in South Korea, and then a year with Americorps in Portland, Maine, before completing a master's degree program in teaching English as a second language at the School for International Training in 2014-2015.

When applying to Fulbright, Karlene was looking for a country where she could teach at the university level, since her future plans include teaching English as a Foreign Language and training future English teachers. She was placed at Ankara Sosyal Bilimler Üniversitesi (ASBÜ) in Ankara, Turkey’s capital.  ASBÜ is a new university, and Karlene is assisting with curriculum and materials development in anticipation of the first students enrolling next semester.  She also conducted a review session for her English-teach colleagues working on their Diploma in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Language (Delta), a qualification for experienced TEFL teachers and hopes to devote some time to volunteering with refugees in Turkey in the near future.

Her words of advice to potential Fulbright applicants:  “Don’t believe for a second that your immersive cultural experiences must cease once you have exited the university. If studying, teaching, or conducting research calls to you, then I highly recommend you apply to one of the many programs offered by Fulbright at There is no such thing as a “gap year” – your life experiences shape you and your perspective of the world, no matter your occupation.”