Oi! I’m Cara Snyder: I was born-and-bred in the Washington D.C. area (Greenbelt, Maryland), although I’ve had the pleasure of living and traveling all over the world–Argentina, Guatemala and India, to name a few—before becoming a “nordestined” Brazilian resident. I studied Economics and International Relations at Agnes Scott College and then worked for The Carter Center (TCC) after graduation in 2009 before becoming a Fulbright Scholar. At TCC, my country of focus was Venezuela, which is also the country for which I was awarded the Fulbright Scholarship. But when my visa got rejected, the State Department gave me the choice to pick where I wanted to work. And of course, I chose O Brasil.
During my grant, I was an English Teaching Assistant at the Insituto Federal de Ciência, Tecnologia e Educação do Sertão Pernambucano, abbreviated to IF-Sertão. At the Instituto, I taught English Language courses, gave lectures and workshops, planned and executed cultural and language events and helped found and coach my school’s Rugby teams. Click here to see a short film about my year living and teaching in Petrolina’s “Rural Zone” Campus: A Fulbright ETA in Petrolina, Brasil.
In the year following my grant, I continued coaching and playing sports, opened IF’s first Language Center and Petrolina’s first TOEFL testing center. Together with Chelsea, we initiated TOEFL curriculum, secured scholarships abroad for our students and put on two major events (thanks to help from the US Consulate, and several local entities). Check out the links from the “greatest hits” post to find out more about our English Immersion Camp and the First Petrolina International English Fair.
While it would be impossible to describe (in this short space) how Brazil shaped my life and spirit, my time specifically as a University Professor did two things: it revealed a desire to teach at the University level, and it affirmed my commitment to social justice, with a gender focus. The most meaningful experiences came from “justice-teachable moments” with my students as well as working with my Women’s Rugby team. Having witnessed the transformative power of women’s athletics, I hope to work with gender and sports, both as an academic and an activist.
Feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Um abraço, and I look forward to hearing from you!