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The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

Q & A with Enrique Tellez-Espiga


Enrique Téllez-Espiga, Ph.D., was appointed director of fellowships in August. The Fellowships Office provides assistance for students to create applications for undergraduate study, study abroad and research internships. Téllez-Espiga has been teaching at St. Joe’s since 2013 and was a member of the fellowships committee before his promotion to director. The Hawk met with Téllez-Espiga to learn more about his new role.

The Hawk: How do you feel about your new position as the director of fellowships?

Téllez-Espiga: I am still getting used to it, but it’s always rewarding working with students who are interested in doing other things outside of school or after their time at school.

The Hawk: What does your position involve?

Téllez-Espiga: Day to day, it’s lots of emails and reaching out to students. One of the issues is, the number of students that are aware of the Office of the Fellowships is not very large. So sometimes when you reach out to them, they’re like, ‘What is a fellowship?’ So usually, I contact the students and ask if they’re interested, and then we set up a meeting with a couple of students where they talk about their interests and their plans to see if there is any scholarship or fellowship that both fit their plans and interests. If so, I’ll help them with applications.

The Hawk: What drew you to apply to the position?

Téllez-Espiga: Well, obviously teaching is also very rewarding. It’s what I like doing, but [it’s a] change of pace to also get more involved with students and in something that is meaningful to them. When you teach a class, you might be interested in a topic, you might not, or it might be a mandatory class. But here, if our students engage in talking and they want to apply for a position, it’s because they really want it and it’s very meaningful to learn. So, probably working with a team to help [students] achieve their goals was the main drive.

The Hawk: Are there any new ideas that you want to bring to your position?

Téllez-Espiga: There’s a large population of students who are not so aware of the fellowships . We have very few first generation students applying to fellowships, and it is something that I would like to improve and to make the office more well known. The main thing I’m trying to do now is [redesign] the website because, if you check the website, it’s 15 years old. So it’s very outdated, and I’m trying to bring it to 2023.

The Hawk: How has what you’ve done in the past prepared you for taking on this position?

Téllez-Espiga: I have applied to fellowships before, and scholarships. What I tell the students who might be a little hesitant of applying for fellowships or scholarships is that even if you don’t get the fellowship, you are still getting the practice of writing essays about yourself.

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Kiley O'Brien
Kiley O'Brien, Assistant News Editor
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