As the recipient of a prestigious 2017-18 Fulbright U.S. Student Award, Jordan Loretz ’17 will travel to Taiwan this fall to begin his tenure as an English Teaching Assistant. An Asian studies and music double major, Loretz plans to use music as a tool to help his students advance their English language comprehension and speaking skills.
“I hope to learn more about how music functions in Taiwanese culture, and the ways in which it’s incorporated into daily life and education,” Loretz says. “I hope to get more students and community members involved in making music and to increase their exposure to music.”
Known for its highly competitive field of applicants, the Fulbright Program is the U.S. government’s flagship international educational exchange program, operating in more than 140 countries throughout the world. Earlier this year, Hobart and William Smith Colleges were named among the nation’s top colleges and universities with the most recipients of U.S. Fulbright Student Awards.
This spring, Loretz joins three other HWS students in receiving the honor. Sara DeVault-Feldman ’17 has been awarded an English Teaching Assistantship to Vietnam. Danielle Mueller ’16, MAT ’17 will travel to the Czech Republic to teach English; and Juliana Heffern ’17 was awarded a Fulbright to Malaysia.
Loretz, who says he is most excited to teach in Taiwan due to its rich history of music, will use music as a teaching tool and as a platform to integrate into the local culture and Taiwanese musical traditions. He plans to collaborate with musical groups and organizations in his host city and to organize events to raise money for charity foundations.
Well-prepared for the demands of teaching in a foreign country, Loretz will draw on his experience volunteering as an English teacher to a third-grade class while studying in Nanjing, China. While studying Mandarin Chinese and global business in Nanjing, he used musical performance as a tool to engage with his students and bridge language barriers.
“I used music to grab their attention and engage them with active learning,” explains Loretz, who hopes to pursue ethnomusicology at the post-graduate level and develop a Mandarin language-learning curriculum that uses music as a means of language acquisition.
At HWS, Loretz works as a teaching fellow in the Spanish and Music Departments and has worked as an America Reads tutor. He is the president of A Perfect Third a cappella group and is involved with HWS theatre, jazz ensemble, chorale and cantori and the Mandarin-English Language table.
Loretz is a member of the Chimera Honors Society and was the recipient of the Ben Hale First Year Academic Achievement Award, the Frank Smith ’26 Scholarship for Community Involvement and the Milton Haight Turk Memorial Prize for Excellence in the Humanities. He received a Student International Initiative Fund grant from the HWS Center for Global Education to pursue an independent project while studying abroad in Nanjing.