Matilde studied abroad in Spain in 2017.

What made you interested to study abroad?
“I became interested in studying abroad when I was in high school because it seemed like a fun experience, and I want to improve my Spanish and going to a country where that is the main language spoken seemed like a great way to practice speaking Spanish.”

Before you went, what did you expect from the experience?
“What I expected from this experience was to make new friends and practice my Spanish skills.”

What did you learn from this trip?
“I learned that I can live in a city and find my way around.”

What was the best or most interesting thing you experienced during study abroad?
“The best thing that I experienced in Spain was becoming best friends with another student that was in the same study abroad program. I enjoy going to eat with her, walking around Barcelona, and finding new places. The history and architecture was very interesting.”

What is something that you did not expect or that challenged you during your time abroad? How did you deal with it?
“Something that I did not expect was the food and the ham that they have in Spain. I do not eat ham so it was hard sometimes picking something to eat that did not have ham in it. Most days the food was good, but there were days where I did not like the food at my homestay. What I did to help me throughout the time I was there was find cafes and restaurants that had food I enjoyed eating.”

What advice do you have for other students who are considering studying abroad?
“The advise that I have for students who are considering to study abroad is to journal and take pictures to remember all the memories you will make during the trip. I would also tell them to relax and enjoy your time and not focus only on doing homework all day long.”

How will studying abroad continue to impact your life (academics, career, identity) now that you are back in the US?
“This study abroad opportunity has impacted my decision of different places I would like to go study abroad and looking into universities that have study abroad programs that interest me. It has also impacted my career path because now I am considering to work abroad in another country.”