FORT MADISON – Ryan Alfred, Holy Trinity Catholic’s 2018 Teacher of the Year, has been tapped to receive another award, a James Madison Graduate Fellowship.
A James Madison Graduate Fellowship is a $24,000 graduate fellowship awarded to “individuals desiring to become outstanding teachers of the American Constitution at the secondary school level,” according to the James Madison Foundation website. Their goal is to award one fellowship per state per year. The fellowship goes toward a master’s degree, and from there, Alfred will engage in other classes concerning the Constitution.
“James Madison is one of the most well known drafters of the Constitution. There has to be at least four classes that go towards the Constitution. With that, you also get a trip to Georgetown University and take 6 credits there. I’ll do that in the summer of 2019,” Alfred said.
Alfred was motivated to apply because of his passion for government.
“I’ve always wanted to obtain my masters degree and I think I have an interest in government and the constitution, and that really made me want to apply,” he said.
Alfred said that most people are given the fellowship after applying multiple times, and he wasn’t expecting to only apply once.
“With this being my first year, I thought I’d at least have to apply a couple of times,” he said.
Earlier this year, Alfred went on the Holy Trinity’s senior class trip to Washington D.C., and is glad to be going back.
“I’m excited to go out to Washington D.C. and see D.C. again and go in and learn more about something I’m passionate about, as well as teach my students better about the country they live in and the world they live in.”
While looking back at the beginning of his teaching career, Alfred remarked that the impact he has on students is more important than his accomplishments.
“It’s just realizing how many kids you’ve impacted and knowing that they’re learning all this information,” he said. “The most memorable thing from my teaching is being able to teach the kids about the world they live in and making them future leaders. I think that’s more important than what I’ve accomplished.”
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