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Recent UC Graduate and Fulbright Winner Will Teach in the Czech Republic

Trishia Mudd will study the country’s educational system while teaching students English.

Date: 5/26/2014
By: Pamela DeCoste
Phone: (513) 556-2021
Trishia Mudd will soon embark on her second international experience to the Czech Republic, but this trip may prove to be the most meaningful yet. Mudd, who recently graduated from UC’s School of Education with her bachelor of science in secondary education, will be pursuing a teaching opportunity abroad thanks to a prestigious award from the Fulbright U.S. Student Program.

The Fulbright U.S. Student Program offers fellowships for U.S. graduating college seniors, graduate students, young professionals and artists to study, conduct research and/or teach English abroad.
Trishia Mudd

Originally from Milford, Ohio, Mudd studied secondary education and language arts at UC, and is aiming to help Czech students develop a love of literature. As a new high school English teacher, Mudd plans to utilize much of her prior student teaching experience, noting that she has her students focus on journaling to help them learn grammar and writing skills.

“I find that students usually relate to the characters in the books we read,” Mudd said. “I give a lot of prompts that encourage them to reflect, and it amazes me how much students will open up to me about other issues that may be going on in their lives because they relate to what a character may be going through.”

This will be Mudd’s second trip to the Czech Republic, where she says she now has friends and connections. Her first trip was with Mary Benedetti, professor and director of UC’s Center for English as a Second Language, who takes students on a two-week study abroad trip to the Czech Republic annually.

In addition to teaching students English, Mudd plans on teaching about the U.S. culture while also learning about theirs.

“When I was there previously, I did an informal survey asking students about their interest in reading and the value they place in it,” she said. “A lot of them didn’t understand why I was conducting the survey, because their literacy rates are better than those in the U.S.”

Traditionally, the literacy rate in the Czech Republic has been very high, at approximately 99 percent.

Mudd also plans to learn as much as she can about the Czech Republic’s educational system and its similarities and differences compared to the U.S.

Upon returning to the U.S., Mudd will pursue a Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) certification and apply for doctoral programs in language, literacy and culture. Although Mudd is unsure of whether she will stay in Cincinnati, she is pleased with her decision to graduate from the UC College of Education, Criminal Justice, and Human Services (CECH) and apply for the Fulbright award.

“I’m really fortunate to have been accepted to UC’s education program, and I encourage other education majors to apply for a Fulbright if they want to get exposed to other cultures,” Mudd says. “I’ve really enjoyed working with my mentors and the professors here. It’s been a great experience.”

UC students interested in these prestigious awards such as the Fulbright can find out about those awards and additional scholarship opportunities through UC’s Office of Nationally Competitive Awards. The office not only serves as a resource for these national awards, but also supports students as they navigate the application process.