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Loyola University New Orleans Graduate Selected For Fulbright Student Award

Loyola press release - March 23, 2017

Graduates going global! Loyola University New Orleans 2014 graduate Natalie Jones is selected as one of the 2017-18 Fulbright U.S. Student Award recipients to teach English in Argentina.

The Fulbright Program provides grants for individually-designed study/research projects and grants for English teaching assistant programs. 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. The Fulbright Program is the U.S. government’s flagship international educational exchange program.

Graduating from Loyola with a double major in Spanish and Theater Arts, Jones has spent her post-graduate career teaching at the International School of Louisiana and traveling across Latin America from Cuba to Colombia. During her travels, Jones spent time both teaching English and immersing herself in various cultures.

In 2014, she traveled to Guatemala, where she worked with Dr. Nathan Henne of Loyola's Department of Languages and Cultures on a project that explored the work of Guatemalan author and activist Luis de Lión. Dr. Henne's research uses de Lión as a prism to examine broader themes of ethnicity, identity, imperialism, and violence.

For her Fulbright, Jones will spend time teaching English while also pursuing her research in accents. In Argentina, Jones plans to achieve and create a database of accents from various regions of the country that researchers can use.

"If you think about it, accents are like wearing a hat or wearing a mask,” said Jones. “It's a voice coming out of your mouth. It changes the way you are perceived."

Jones’ goal is to one day travel to all Spanish-speaking countries of the world with the intent of promoting social justice projects across the Western hemisphere.

"Natalie represents the best an artistic, liberal arts, and Jesuit education has to offer," said Dr. Laura Hope, chair of Loyola's Department of Theatre Arts and Dance. “She has an expansive, compassionate, and engaged world view applied to her life as an artist, social justice warrior, and a citizen.”

Until her global adventure begins, Jones will star in the role of "Heavenly" in Southern Repertory Theatre's production of "Sweet Bird of Youth," which premieres March 22 on Loyola's campus as part of this year's Tennessee Williams Festival.

The Fulbright competition is administered at Loyola University New Orleans through Carol Ann MacGregor, assistant professor of sociology and national fellowships adviser at Loyola. More information on how to apply can be found by clicking here.