Students and Alumni
We have many accomplished students who are active within the department and elsewhere. They participate in honor societies, clubs and other student organizations and contribute to the betterment of Keene State College, our community, and the world.
Our graduates are a living testament to the importance of the study of foreign languages and cultures in a liberal arts education as well as to the many academic and professional doors it can open in a wide variety of fields. We have alumni who have gone into teaching, government services, social work, marketing, USAid Senegal and the Peace Corps in Africa. Others have enrolled in graduate programs at prestigious institutions such as Middlebury College, the University of Massachusetts, Lesley University, the University of Michigan and the University of Connecticut.
Jaclyn Efraimson ‘14
Since her high school Spanish classes, Jaclyn Efraimson always knew she would teach Spanish at the secondary education level.
When she enrolled at Keene State College, it was her Spanish professors, Dr. Hawes and Dr. Ware, who influenced her to major in Spanish.
It wasn’t until she spent her Spring 2013 semester earning 12 credits studying in Seville that she became fully immersed in Spanish culture. “I couldn’t speak any English,” she said. “I didn’t know what to eat so I took a Spanish cuisine class there and a Spanish society class to learn about how they live.”
Before her trip, she didn’t want to leave home. The day she arrived and moved in with her host family, she knew the semester was going to be amazing. “They took me in like their own,” she said. “Family is very important there.”
Of the significant cultural differences she learned was the pace of life in Spain. “In America, we’re always working,” she said. “We live to work - they work to live.”
Efraimson will be certified to teach grades 5 through 12 when she graduates next year and plans to teach Spanish at the high school level.
Going to Spain completely changed her outlook on foreign culture. “I was more closed-minded when I left for Spain,” she said. “Coming home I realized there’s so much more out there - so many different kinds of people.”
Corey Henderson ‘07
Corey Henderson’s passion for the Spanish language was lit when he was 8 years old when he read “Arroz Con Leche,” a book of children’s songs and nursery rhymes. He learned them all, and by the time he was in 2nd grade in northern Vermont, he was learning to speak the language in school. After a Spanish teaching internship his senior year of high school, Henderson knew he wanted to continue at that level. “I needed a program that would really impact my teaching,” he said. “Keene State College is known for its exemplary teacher prep.”
He credits Dr. Barbara Ware for preparing him for his future career. “She was so inspiring and supportive,” he said. “She talked about current events; she was always connecting things to the modern world. She shared her professional research, invited us students to dinner at her house and came to every Spanish Club event.”
Dr. Ware was especially supportive when he was apprehensive about studying abroad. “I’d never traveled internationally and came from a small town - I was nervous to go,” he said. “I’ll never forget what (Dr. Ware) said to me. She said, ‘You’re so ready for this - this is perfect for you.’ I had the best time of my life.”
Henderson has taught world languages at Inter-Lakes High School in Meredith, NH, since 2007, the year he earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Spanish and Secondary Education from Keene State College. While a student at Keene State, he was awarded the prestigious Blackington Achievement Award for outstanding proficiency in Spanish by Dr. Ware herself.
He is an active member in the New Hampshire Association of World Language Teachers (NHAWLT), the Modern Languages Association (MLA) and the American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese (AATSP). In 2011, he published his article entitled, “Once Upon a Time: Using Children’s Literature to Enhance Second Language (L2) Reading Comprehension” in the New Hampshire Journal of Education.
Later that year, he was named “Best of New Hampshire” at the 2011 New Hampshire Association of World Language Teachers State Conference, and then went on to present at the Northeast Conference on the Teaching of Foreign Languages Regional Conference in 2012 and lived in Buenos Aires, Argentina during the summer of 2012.
The support from his professor continues. “Dr. Ware is there in the front row when I present at conferences. She always tells me how proud she is of me. She’s so much more than a teacher - she’s my mentor.”