AKRON, OH – Nov. 21 – University of Akron alumna Brooke Leach Grable ’04, ’09 has been working overseas since September training English teachers at Kosova English Teachers Network in Pristina, Kosovo.
Grable is among 140 Americans selected by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs for the 2017-2018 English Language Fellow Program. The 10-month program began in September.
“It is such an honor to have been chosen as an English Language Fellow,” Grable said. “I’m so thankful for this special opportunity. My hopes for this fellowship are to make a difference in English language teaching here in Kosovo, and to help me focus on an area in which I may earn my doctorate.”
Grable earned her bachelor’s degree in early childhood education from UA in 2004, and her master’s degree in elementary education in 2009. She also earned an Ohio Reading Endorsement and TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) Endorsement through UA.
A resident of Parma, Ohio, Grable has taken a sabbatical from her regular job teaching English as a Second Language in the Nordonia Hills City Schools District in order to do the fellowship.
After her undergraduate career at UA, Grable moved to Shanghai, China, where she lived for three years teaching kindergarten and first grade before returning to Akron to begin graduate school.
“I was able to teach students from all over the world,” Grable said about her experience as an elementary teacher in China. “That’s when I fell in love with language learners.”
After graduate school, Grable found a teaching job with Constellation Schools at Stockyard Community Elementary in Cleveland. As a Title I reading tutor in a school with more than one-third of the school’s population speaking Spanish, Grable started the school’s English as a Second Language program. She was the only ESL teacher in all of Constellation’s 17 schools, later becoming its ESL Program Coordinator
The English Language Fellow Program allows experienced American English teachers to enact meaningful and sustainable changes in the way that English is taught abroad. Through projects developed by U.S. Embassies in more than 80 countries, Fellows work directly with local teachers, students and educational professionals to improve the quality of English language instruction offered at prestigious universities and other academic institutions. English Language Fellows are counted among the more than 50,000 individuals participating in U.S. Department of State exchange programs each year.