More graduates going global! Loyola University New Orleans is pleased to announce that recent graduate Mathew Holloway ’16 is the second student selected as one of the 2017-18 Fulbright U.S. Student Award recipients. Holloway will teach English in Panama while pursuing a supplementary research project of his own.
The Fulbright program’s English Teaching Assistant programs place Fulbrighters in classrooms abroad to provide assistance to the local English teachers. ETA’s help teach English while serving as cultural ambassadors for the U.S. The U.S. Embassy will arrange placement for Holloway in a Panamanian university, school (middle and elementary) 0r other educational/governmental institution, which may be located in the capital city or in more rural settings.
The Fulbright Program is the U.S. government’s flagship international educational exchange program. During the experience, Fulbrighters meet, work, live with and learn from the people of the host country, engaging in daily experiences. The program facilitates cultural exchange in the classroom, field, home, and in routine tasks, giving recipients an appreciation of others’ viewpoints and beliefs, the way they do things, and the way they think.
Since graduating from Loyola with a major in sociology and a minor and Spanish, Holloway has been traveling around the world, visiting countries as close as Mexico and as cold as Iceland.
While at Loyola, Holloway was involved in student organizations and leadership across campus as a student ambassador, an Ignacio Volunteer, a member of Omicron Delta Kappa, and the president of the Black Student Union. In addition, Holloway served the New Orleans community through youth engagement and as a summer research grant recipient for Loyola’s Jesuit Social Research Institute. Through Loyola’s Center for International Education, Holloway was able to study abroad in Ecuador, which furthered his passion for Latin American studies, specifically Afro-Latino cultures and multiculturalism.
“In high school, I visited Panama and was shocked to see people who looked like me, my mother, and family. It surprised me because typically Latin Americans are portrayed as lighter skinned,” said Holloway. “After that experience, I wanted to go to college, learn Spanish and study cultures abroad. Panama inspired me to pursue global social justice and to strive to become a global citizen.”
Between travels, Holloway works at Café Reconcile, a nonprofit program that helps young adults from lower-income neighborhoods gain workforce experience in the tourism and restaurant industries. As a program assistant, Holloway works to recruit students into the program and generate community outreach.
While in Panama, Holloway will ignite a research project of his own called Open Spaces, a program he created in order to open a forum for students to discuss important topics related to activism, advocacy and ally-ship.
“From comparing racism between Panama and United States to learning about the effects of global warming, I want to empower students to know how they can support and address issues affecting our global community,” said Holloway.
After his time with the Fulbright program in Panama, Holloway plans on advancing his career by attending graduate school where he will study international education, relations and development.
“The experiences Mathew gained through his Loyola education with study abroad in Ecuador and with service learning gave him excellent raw experience and has prepared him for this exciting journey to Panama,” said Carol Ann MacGregor, fellowships and scholarships coordinator at Loyola. “His genuine enthusiasm for cross-cultural exchange, his interest in social justice and addressing inequalities, and his perseverance in the face of challenges will all serve him well in his new role as a teacher.”