Dr. Erin Hillis: Past Co-Chair of Study Tennessee

Dr. Erin Hillis (Associate Director of International Programs, PDSO) has been with Rhodes College since June 2004. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Linguistics in 1998, her Master of Arts in English as a Second Language in 2000, her PhD in Applied Linguistics in 2017 from The University of Memphis.

Primarily responsible for international student services and exchange programs, Erin also advises US students on study abroad programs. Working with both of these populations combines the best of both worlds for her, as she has been both a study abroad and an international student herself. Erin oversees the assessments of international programs at Rhodes.

In the summer of 2015, Erin studied abroad at the University of West Bohemia in Pilsen, Czech Republic, for her graduate work in Teaching English as a Foreign Language. While an undergrad, Erin studied language at Ningxia University in China and at the Far Eastern State University in Vladivostok, Russia, and volunteered several times in Punta Gorda, Belize. Her other travels include destinations in Asia, Europe, and the Near East.

What started as a simple summer trip with a friend 20 years ago has become a permanent part of Erin’s adopted heritage; she now considers Stavanger, Norway to be her second home. She has become a de facto member of her host family and spends a significant amount of time with them during yearly visits.

Whether working with international or domestic students, she helps them adopt the motto that has seen her though scores of cultural transitions: “Wherever you go, go with all your heart."

Erin and her host sister sledding in Norway.

Erin and her host sister sledding in Norway.