[Courtesy Photo]

Charlotte Quigley, a third grade teacher at the Helen M. Knight Elementary school, was recently awarded a spot on the Fulbright Teachers for Global Classrooms Program, a yearlong professional learning opportunity. Quigley will observe classrooms in another country for two weeks, complete a cultural project based on where she travels, and bring back that knowledge to HMK Elementary. She departs in spring 2022.

“I wanted something more enriching for the classroom,” she said. She’s been teaching for 17 years, and has worked in art galleries and as an art teacher (she’s also an artist at Gallery Moab). Bringing art into the classroom was always her way of making classes more fun and interesting, and now, she’ll have her Fulbright knowledge too.

Quigley applied for the Fulbright both because she wants to bring more cultural awareness to her classroom and also because she wants to avoid becoming burned out. She loves teaching, and this will make it a bit more interesting, she said.

“I really do think it’s important for kids to know about different cultures,” Quigley said. “I don’t think a lot of these kids get to travel a lot … and so I think that’s a really important part of this.”

The Grand County School District serves a rural community, Quigley pointed out, so programs like the Fulbright can immensely help with educating the students. Quigley will bring back both knowledge of a new country’s culture and knowledge gained from working with teachers from all over the world who teach all different subjects.

“I’m really excited about the project,” she said. “And I also love to travel, so that’s a big part of it.”

“Charlotte is a highly qualified educator, and is continually seeking to improve her skills as an educator,” said Jill Tatton, principal at HMK Elementary. “The process of becoming a recipient of the Fulbright is long and seeks out quality educators. Charlotte has earned this opportunity, and will do a fine job.”

Fulbrights are notoriously competitive programs. This year’s cohort for the global classrooms program will have about 60 educators, with only two from Utah, including Quigley.

For this program, the educators will spend a semester doing online coursework for a graduate-level course on global education then will go to Washington, D.C. for an in-person professional learning workshop. After two weeks doing international field experience, educators will complete a “global education guide,” similar to a capstone project, that will serve as a resource tool for their local community.