Matthew Liston ’13, of Boulder, Colorado, has been awarded a Fulbright Scholarship to serve as an English Teaching Assistant in Jordan.

Liston’s interest in Arabic began when he took an elementary Arabic class at Colorado College. He later studied abroad in Jordan and spent six months there conducting research for his senior thesis, “Nation-Building in Jordan: The Hashemite Use of Educational Reform as a Means to Legitimate their Rule.”

After graduating magna cum laude with an interdisciplinary major titled Classics-History-Politics, Liston has continued to practice Arabic over the past few years by teaching Arabic to high school students at Eagle Rock School and Professional Development Center in Estes Park, Colorado. He also teaches English and American cultural fluency to Iraqi refugees at a community center in Aurora, Colorado.

“I hope to use my time in Jordan to build connections in the country, strengthen my Arabic skills, and gain experience that I can use to better support Arabic-speaking immigrant and refugee populations once I return to the U.S.,” says Liston.

The Fulbright English Teaching Assistant (ETA) program is a highly competitive and prestigious year-long, postgraduate fellowship with a focus on cultural exchange. Liston is one of only 15 Fulbright ETAs assigned to Jordan for the 2016-17 academic year.

ETAs assist classroom English language teachers and serve as cultural ambassadors for the U.S., both with their students and with the wider community.