Prior to being an English Language Fellow, Ben Taylor was a Peace Corps Volunteer on the island of Pohnpei, in the Federated States of Micronesia for two years, where he co-taught 1st through 8th grade English courses with local teachers. He used his work in Pohnpei as a Volunteer as a foundation for his Master’s degree thesis. Once Taylor finished his Master’s in English (International Program) with a TESL/TEFL emphasis, he set his sights on the English Language Fellow Program.
Selected for a fellowship in Kazakhstan, Taylor felt that he was able to transfer many of the skills he gained as a Volunteer to his fellowship – planning, coordination, and public speaking just to name a few. Most importantly, Taylor learned the value of cherishing personal and professional victories, even the really small ones, as well as the importance of keeping everything in context. Taylor believes that the skills he gained as a Volunteer played a part in his Fellowship being both enjoyable and effective.
Taylor’s fellowship was unique due to the degree to which media outreach and TV/radio education played a major role in his daily work. During his fellowship, Taylor was in a much more digitally connected environment than he had previously taught in. As a result of his unique fellowship experience, Taylor plans to pursue English-language video and radio work as a future career. In doing this, he will be able share American culture and the English language with a curious and welcoming audience world-wide.