W&L’s David Gálvez ’22 Awarded Fulbright to France Galvez has received a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship to France, where he will teach English to secondary school students and serve as a cultural ambassador for the United States.
Washington and Lee senior David Gálvez ’22 has been awarded a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship (ETA) to France. He is majoring in Romance languages and education policy with a concentration in U.S. government. Gálvez grew up in The Plains, Virginia, and attended Fauquier High School in Warrenton, Virginia.
Gálvez will depart for his program in September and spend seven months teaching in a secondary school in France. The Fulbright ETA program places grantees in high schools in priority education areas defined by socioeconomic criteria, providing students from diverse populations with an opportunity to have direct contact with native English-speakers. Fulbright ETA awards are part of the general French Government English Teaching Assistantship program and are enhanced with an additional monthly stipend, a housing allowance where applicable and enrichment programs.
“I am grateful for the recognition because of what it says about all the people who helped me emotionally, financially and academically these past four years,” Gálvez said.
Gálvez has served as a leader in English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL), a student organization that provides language tutoring and other services for residents in Rockbridge County and was instrumental in developing an online ESOL curriculum in response to the pandemic. Ellen Mayock, professor of Spanish, co-advises ESOL and said that Gálvez has brought curiosity and energy to his work on campus and in the community.
“I admire David’s intelligence, creativity, energy and sense of humor,” Mayock said. “He has a unique combination of deep critical-thinking skills and optimism, and I truly believe he will help us to shape a better world.”
Gálvez is the lead technology and learning specialist at the Global Discovery Laboratories (GDL), a facility in W&L’s Center for Global Learning that provides educational and technological support to the campus community. During this academic year, he has served as GDL’s coordinator for Language of Rockbridge, a program that offers world language instruction to local elementary and middle school students. Dick Kuettner, director of the Global Discovery Laboratories, has gotten to know Galvez as an employee, an advisee in Romance languages and a student in education studies courses. The two first met when Galvez attended the Governor’s World Language Academies, which Kuettner coordinates for the Virginia Department of Education, on campus as a high school student. Galvez later worked for the Governor’s Full-Immersion French Academy as chief language mentor.
“David is now ready to take that step into the real world where what you do and what you say truly matter,” Kuettner said. “He is well spoken, an independent thinker and worker, exudes confidence because of knowledge and has a healthy inquisitiveness. Without a doubt, Fulbright has found a winner.”
Gálvez plans to seek his teacher licensure for the Commonwealth of Virginia upon returning from his Fulbright experience and gain teaching experience before obtaining a master’s in education policy.
Gálvez said that students interested in a Fulbright should take advantage of the resources W&L provides. “The university offers many opportunities for you to acquire the skills and knowledge needed for the Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship all over the world, such as English for Speakers of Other Languages, Languages for Rockbridge and W&L’s Education faculty,” Gálvez said. “It’s never too late to take courses or participate in organizations related to foreign languages and education, and students from all disciplines are always welcome.”
The Fulbright Program was established more than 75 years ago to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries. Fulbright is the world’s largest and most diverse international educational exchange program. The primary source of funding for the Fulbright Program is an annual appropriation made by the U.S. Congress to the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.
Washington and Lee University is proud to be included on the list of U.S. colleges and universities that produced the most 2021-2022 Fulbright U.S. Students for the fourth consecutive year.
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