Hamline accepts MA TESOL Award

State Department presents Hamline with Top English Language Fellow Producing Institution Award

Hamline University was honored by the U.S. Department of State with a Top English Language Fellow Producing Institution Award at the annual TESOL International Convention on Friday, March 22 in Tampa, Florida.

The award recognizes Hamline as a Master in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages program with a high number of alumni selected as 2023-24 State Department English Language Fellows, thereby supporting U.S. foreign policy objectives and educational exchange. 

Every year, the English Language Fellowship program selects highly qualified educators in the TESOL field to participate in 10-month-long fellowships at academic institutions throughout 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.

“It’s very prestigious for students to be selected for the fellowship, as it’s a very rigorous selection process,” said Professor Julia Reimer, co-director of the MA TESOL program in Hamline’s School of Education and Leadership. “These select students gain international experience and share their professional skills by collaborating on institution-specific curriculum, national curriculum or oftentimes speaking at national conferences during their fellowships.”

In recent years, Hamline traditionally has at least one post-graduate student selected as a program fellow. Hamline alumni selected as 2023-24 English Language Fellows are Jill King, Shana Lee and Susan Marshall.

“Being part of Hamline's TESOL community has allowed me to be part of an important network of experts in the field and contributes to my continued growth professionally,” said King, who currently serves as a resident expert and instructor at Dong Thap University in Vietnam, where many aspiring teachers and other English Language Professionals are educated and trained. 

“All of the courses and projects in Hamline's MA TESOL program have been extremely helpful and vital in choosing methods, strategies and resources to innovate curriculum and guide mixed level groups in subjects such as English skills, reading comprehension for IELTS, American cultures and especially intercultural communications, for which I am actively designing the curriculum along with my local counterparts,” King said.

In addition to supporting educational exchange abroad and attracting international students to Hamline, core principles within the university’s TESOL curriculum help Hamline grow a strong network of insightful and perceptive scholars who are well-prepared for the responsibility of teaching English abroad.

“The background that students gain at Hamline and their knowledge of applied linguistics and how to be culturally respectful educators is really helpful  to securing these fellowships,” Reimer said. “We also have a strong focus on understanding the ethical considerations of English in a global context: Yes, it’s a tool to support educational and economic advancement, but there are also issues with English becoming a force that sometimes means people lose their first languages, too. We try to really prepare students on what their role is in that context.”

Also at the event, Hamline alumnus James Riley ’11 was honored with the Virtual English Language Educator Impact Award. Click here for more on that story.