We kick off the new year by talking to the 2020 Pollock Scholars. First up is international educator Jacob Daniel Huff, who realized he was a TCK long after he became one. He tells us how it fed his passion to support children growing up in an international environment.
2020 Pollock Scholar Jacob Daniel Huff is an international educator who as a child grew up across three different US states and then moved to Vietnam. As an adult, he has lived in four different countries with his Korean-born American wife and their daughter. Jacob is fascinated by how students develop a sense of identity in an international context.
Now Elementary Principal at Oasis International School, Kuala Lumpur, he is working on his doctorate in curriculum and instruction and plans to focus his dissertation on multigenerational TCKs.
How did you hear about FIGT and what inspired you to apply for the Scholarship?
I first heard about Families and Global Transition when I was researching Third Culture Kids for my doctoral studies—I believe it was when I was reading Dr. Anastasia Lijadi’s work on place identity construction, just before the 2019 conference. Looking at the sessions, I decided that I would try to attend the 2020 conference. When I found out about the David C. Pollock scholarship, I put it on my calendar to apply.
What are your areas of interest/expertise related to global mobility?
I am the principal of an international elementary school, so I am serving the needs of TCKs every day. I am also doing my doctoral work on international teacher understanding and practices in regard to identity development in TCKs. I am about to begin work on case studies of multigenerational TCK families. Each story will be different, but they will all focus on the development of identity in these families.
How did you get into this field? Why are you passionate about it/why is it important to you?
When I was a teenager, I moved with my family to Vietnam and though at the time I did not know what a TCK was, I became one. After I became an international educator and learned the term, I not only saw that this group existed and recognized the importance of meeting these students’ needs, but I realized I had had many of the struggles often associated with TCKs.
The field of TCK research is important to me personally because I am an ATCK; as an international educator, because TCKs are the population I serve; and as a father, because I am raising a TCK.
What do you look forward to at FIGT2020 in Bangkok?
I am looking forward to the sessions, particularly those by Dr. Lijadi and Ruth E. Van Reken. I am also looking forward to meeting old friends and new people who care deeply about TCK issues, sharing stories, and learning people’s backgrounds.
Finally: Can you share a random piece of info about yourself, please?
Whenever I am traveling or whenever I move to a new country, one of my favorite things is to explore the street food. I can pretty much guarantee that I will enjoy any country with a vibrant, delicious street-food culture. When I spend an extended period of time in the US, street food is the thing that I miss the most. What I love about street food are the smells, the simplicity, the bold flavors, the communal nature of it, and the way that it is soaked in the culture of the place.
ALSO: Read Jacob's full bio and learn about all the 2020 Scholars
Every year, the David C. Pollock Scholarship brings new voices to the FIGT conference and it's kept alive with your support. If you will be at FIGT2020, we hope many of you will participate in the 2020 Lucky Draw!
We are also happily accepting donations such as books, coaching sessions, and workshops. The Lucky Draw provides a great platform for people to hear about your services and raises funds to continue the Pollock Scholar Legacy. Please contact Matilda Criel-Ewoldt, Scholarship Chair, for further information at firstname.lastname@example.org.