Professor of Spanish
4200 54th Avenue South
St. Petersburg, FL 33711
toll-free: (800) 456-9009
In Their Own Words
Class of 2009
International Relations and Global Affairs
Making the decision to go to Eckerd was an easy choice. Acting on the advice of some high school classmates who spoke highly of the college, I packed my bags and said goodbye to my hometown with some trepidation about what life would be like in a new environment so far away from home. Needless to say, I found my niche both academically and socially at Eckerd within a short time. One of the aspects that I loved most about the experience was the close personal interaction with my professors, who made the adjustment very smooth with their constant support. In the Spanish department in particular, I felt that the professors were deeply invested in not only the academic success of each student but also in their overall well-being and development as people. I was able to create projects on my own that expanded on my own interests; classes weren’t just about learning the language from some formula, they were dynamic and engaging. And, most importantly, I was encouraged by my professors to travel abroad and put what I had been learning into practice.
I had the opportunity to travel to Argentina my Junior year, and that experience was truly life-changing for me. Being in a place that was so different culturally from where I grew up (not to mention the language barrier that I faced in the beginning) was an amazing challenge. I am still grateful today for the care that my professors took in seeing that I was prepared for the journey. The wide base of language and cultural understanding that I learned in class allowed me to have an exhilarating adventure. There is nothing like pushing outside of your comfort zone to meet people with a different way of life, and realizing that we can appreciate each other because of—and not despite—our differences.
One year away from my graduation and the imprints of my Eckerd education are plainly visible; I moved back to Argentina and I am now teaching English to Argentine students. My knowledge of Spanish has been invaluable in the classroom—I use it to explain difficult grammar points with my beginning students, or to give an in-the-moment response to advanced students searching for the right word. Also, I have been working sporadically as a translator, which is something I never would have imagined myself doing before Eckerd. Life continues to expand for me both professionally and personally in ways that are very satisfying. My experience at Eckerd helped to start me on a path of learning and growth that I continue to happily walk today.