University of North Florida Hicks Honors College graduate Amanda Wind, who earned her bachelor’s degree in education last month, was selected as a recipient of the esteemed 2018-19 Fulbright Scholarship.
Wind’s award comes in the form of an English Teaching Assistant (ETA) grant to Thailand. The Fulbright ETA program places grantees in schools or universities around the world to supplement local English language instruction. The program aims to increase mutual understanding between the United States and the global community.
“Amanda is an amazing student who is passionate about helping others, especially those less fortunate, said Richard Tryon, UNF scholarship/fellowship advisor who assisted Wind with the application process. “She’s the kind of person who is unafraid to undertake the types of challenges that would give others reason to pause.”
A Southside resident, Wind has a concentration in exceptional student education and is committed to teaching as well as serving youth with disabilities. While she was at the University, she worked with The Arc Jacksonville On Campus Transition (OTC) Program and Best Buddies, serving as a mentor to UNF students with intellectual disabilities and developmental delays.
Through friendship and compassion, Wind helped these students navigate post-secondary life, foster independent living skills and meet social as well as academic obligations. She was awarded the Osprey Community Engagement Medallion April 19 by UNF’s Center for Community-Based Learning for her engagement with the OTC and Best Buddies programs as well as tutoring in the Duval Country Public Schools.
Additionally, Wind has also served Jacksonville’s refugee youth population through volunteering with Lutheran Social Services of Northeast Florida’s after-school programs. Her experiences in local service inspired her to embark on three international study abroad trips while at the University, focused on service learning and cross-cultural exchange.
Wind learned about meaningful volunteerism abroad in Peru, Cambodia, Vietnam and Belize as well as how to best use her skillset to help others in developing nations. Recently, she taught in Belize with a University-partnered school in Belmopan.
Sponsored by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, the Fulbright U.S. Student Program is a competitive, merit-based program that offers one-year opportunities abroad to graduating college seniors, graduate students and young professionals.