Graduating concentrator, Patrick Dinh ’18 was awarded a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship in Macau at the Macau Polytechnic Institute.
While applying for the scholarship, Patrick was interested in participating in an experience abroad during his first year following graduation. “At Princeton, I have always found my mentorship and teaching positions and activities to be the most fulfilling, so being able to teach abroad was just the perfect opportunity for me.” He said. The Fulbright program, in particular, stood out to him given the relationships that it has built across many countries over the years. He adds “Fulbright also prioritizes cultural exchange and I think that being a part of this process is really meaningful.”
From an academic standpoint, his interest in the interactions between Latin America and the Iberian Peninsula with East Asia played a role in deciding to apply for the program in Macau.
“Macau is interesting because it was one of the last European colonies in Asia to be formally released. Many of the street and government buildings in Macau have their names in Portuguese still, despite the overwhelmingly large Chinese influence in the region. I felt as though Macau was a great place for me to use the preparation that I have gained through my coursework in SPO as a base to better understand Eastern culture.”
Furthermore, from a personal standpoint, Patrick looks forward to practicing and becoming more comfortable with Cantonese.
“I come from a family that speaks Cantonese and in Macau, I would both be able to practice and become more comfortable with the language. I think it is a great place for me to become more familiar with my family's culture. In addition, I grew up right outside of Atlantic City, New Jersey, and most of my family is in the casino business, so being able to spend time in Macau, which is the largest gambling capital in the world, will be interesting because I can learn about how individuals and their families interact with this huge global business enterprise and what that means for their lives and experiences as Macanese people being in such close proximity to so many people from around the world.”
The Fulbright Program is the flagship international educational exchange program sponsored by the U.S. government and is designed to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries. The primary source of funding for the Fulbright Program is an annual appropriation made by the U.S. Congress to the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Participating governments, host institutions, corporations, and foundations in foreign countries and in the United States also provide direct and indirect support. Recipients of Fulbright grants are selected on the basis of academic or professional achievement, as well as demonstrated leadership potential in their fields. The Program operates in over 160 countries worldwide.