Fulbright award leads to Beth Lee's unique teaching experience in South Korea

Beth Lee
Beth Lee (UC Davis Aggies)

By UC Davis Aggies 

"For UC Davis field hockey alum Beth Lee, an experience of a lifetime began with the click of a mouse.
'I was super excited to receive that e-mail. What made that situation funny was that I was teaching kindergarten at the time, and opened that message during my prep period. I was caught off-guard.'
'I was so giddy and excited, but my prep period was ending at that time, which made it difficult to immediately share my excitement and that news with anyone. Right when the bell rang, I called my parents right away to tell them the news. There was definitely a lot of excitement and giddiness that day.'
At that time, Lee was entering the final months of a two-year commitment with Teach for America — an opportunity that presented itself during her junior year at UC Davis. Even though Lee was keen on traveling abroad after earning her undergraduate degree at the fifth-ranked public school in the nation, the decision to participate in this program was an easy one.
During her first year in Washington, Lee was placed in a fourth-grade classroom at a school located in Federal Way, 30 minutes south of the Seattle metropolitan area. The following year saw a shift in the age of the students she taught.
'I prefer kindergarten, enjoy the social-emotional development that takes place at that age and teaching them how to become a person. Fourth grade was a huge learning year because one's first year of teaching is a giant learning curve. I will never forget that class.'
A highlight of that kindergarten experience took place in March, by following an impulse to check her e-mail before continuing with that day's curriculum.
Simply by opening a message before picking up her kindergarten students, Lee was presented with another easy decision, thanks to U.S. Department of State and the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board. That message broke the news that she was a 2019-20 Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program award winner."

Read the full story on the UC Davis Aggies website