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Still Thankful, Now for New Reasons

With Thanksgiving just one day away, most Americans start the annual discussion of why they are thankful.... and social media becomes flooded with posts telling the world (or at least people's followers) details of gratitude. (Not a critique against those who choose to share publicly, just a comment that I believe most social media participants could agree on.) When people are asked, "Why are you thankful this Thanksgiving?" most people respond with some variation of "family, friends, and a roof over my head" (or at least I'm assuming those are some of the most common answers). And I, too, am grateful for those things today, and every other day, but the why behind feeling this way has taken on a different meaning since moving across the Atlantic this year.

 

1. FRIENDS

This one is intentionally placed at the top of the list. Moving to any new place can provoke feelings of anxiety and isolation; moving to a new, foreign city, where I understand, but am not cultured to, the customs and am significantly less proficient at the language than I would like to admit, can be a potentially panic-ridden disaster. But that could not be farther from my (three month and counting) experience. While there are many factors that have made my transition from Nashville, Tennessee (with a summer stint in my small New Jersey hometown) to Madrid, Spain smooth, the friendships that I have developed have made the biggest impact. Probably a combination of being Americans (don't worry, I'm working on forging international friendships) and just being who they are, my new friends have filled any potential holes I would have felt from leaving behind my family and friends in the U.S. (Side note: don't worry, none of you back home are being replaced) I have yet to experience feelings of loneliness or homesickness, and I credit a huge part of that to my new friendships. I truly believe that any experience, good or bad, can be positively or negatively impacted by who surrounds you. I thought there was no way lightning could strike twice (the first being the lifelong friendships I made while studying abroad), yet I feel equally supported here in Madrid for my second time around.

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Florence, Italy in late September

2. FAMILY

Of course, I am grateful for my entire family. In particular, though, I feel immense gratitude for three of them this year. I've always felt slightly cooler because I could say I had family members who lived overseas, as if that somehow made me more cultured, but I never anticipated needing their expertise for real life situations. Whether it be housing difficulties (check out the third point in this post), international safety concerns, or general "living in a foreign country advice," two of my uncles and one aunt have guided me through adult-ing abroad. Prior to moving to Madrid, I hadn't anticipated needing their wisdom; now, I know how blessed I am to have family that can help me through this specific phase of my life.

3. A ROOF OVER MY HEAD

The "finding a place to live" situation over here is cutthroat. In August and September, thousands (I don't think I'm exaggerating that number) of young, foreign adults bombarded Madrid. Whether they traveled here through Erasmus, study abroad, or to work as an auxiliar, finding a reasonably priced, decently nice, and relatively safe, in a neighborhood nearish the center, apartment was a nightmare for anyone during that time period. After not finding anything I would deem livable (that makes me sound like a diva, but trust me, I wasn't... I looked at one apartment that didn't even have a kitchen) or affordable, I opted to live with a Spanish family through a language exchange program. I'm not going to go into detail, but the process took about a month to be placed, and when I finally moved into their home, I only ended up living with them for a week. That entire housing ordeal made me seriously question my stay in Spain, despite wanting desperately to remain here. Luckily, I happened upon a newly redone apartment, which is where I now reside. While the apartment is far from perfect (yes, it's redone, but not with high-quality materials), it is comfortable, in a neighborhood which I appreciate, and filled with respectful roommates. 

I could list off so many more things and reasons why I'm grateful, but I wanted to share how my perspective differs this Thanksgiving from years prior.

 

Happy Turkey Day!

Putting yourself out there

Making friends is hard enough. Making those who speak another language is even more trying. It's as much of a challenge as it is a reward. Here are a few ways to find some new amigos españoles:

1. Sign up for an intercambio to polish off your Spanish skills and teach some English. You get what you put in when it comes to Intercambios, no one is going to force you to meet up with them, but you definitely should. You never know who you might meet.

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My friend Martha and I at a bar with my intercambio and a group of his friends. Not only did we get to meet my intercambio for the first time, but many other Spaniards as well.

2. Try a salsa, bachata, or merengue class. Even if you have never danced before, there are classes for all levels. Some clubs offer free classes on certain nights so you can get a feel for what you like before you commit to a studio. There are a lot of studios in Madrid, so make sure to do your research before you put down any money.


3. Join a sports  club. There are plenty of running clubs as well as intramural sports teams throughout Madrid that you can join. You can see how well you match up to the locals in fútbol, try something completely new, or you can stick to a sport you're seasoned at.


4. Go out. The most friends I've made, both American and international, have been from nights that I simply went out with the intent to meet new people. Whether it's grabbing a beer at a bar down the street or spending all night at the club, there are a lot of ways to be social, have fun, and make new friends.

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I met my friend Emma through some friends I met at CIEE orientation when we went out for dinner one night. Turned out she lives one block away from me. She noticed I was sick, lent me some cold medicine, and the rest is history. Here we are exploring San Sebastian in the north of Spain.

5. Explore and adventure through the city on your own. Trying out cafes and bars, browsing through stores, and exploring landmarks on your own can lead you to find people interested in the same things as you. And finally,


6. Don't be scared. The best friendships take some effort. Just remember, you're never alone in a city as big as Madrid. There's always something new around the corner.

A New Year To Remember

“What lies behind us and what lies before us are small matters compared to what lies within us.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
 
Happy New Year friends and readers! I would like to take the opportunity to say I took a few weeks off to clear my mind and enjoy my holiday vacation. I hope all of you did too! Over the course of my vacation, I was able to visit the United States, my home, Florida and also climb Mt. Teide in Tenerife, Spain. I have become conditioned to live in the moment, so looking back on my journeys over the course of the past five months, I feel blessed. Mt. Teide was a beast! It was certainly a great start to checking off one of my New Year's resolutions.
 
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One of my very first blog entries was about “Embracing Uncertainty.” It was about my grandmother and how I would handle living abroad while knowing she was ill back home in the States. My visit back home was a memorable one because I spent time with her. She was full of joy and it was as if she waited for my arrival home. She remembered who I was and her mind was lucid.
 
The following week I headed back to Spain and the day I left to say goodbye she wasn’t feeling well. I won’t forget the feeling I felt getting on the plane because it was if my body’s subconscious was telling me that something was wrong. A few days later my dad called to tell me her health declined and Hospice was at her home. My grandma, Micaela Colon passed peacefully on 11 January 2017.
 
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Looking back at the past five months in Spain, I’ve met some really great people. Some of the best moments have been through meeting new people and traveling to new places. I have also had an incredible journey so far at my school. I look forward to sharing that information through my Series 2 interview.
 
Here’s a recap of the quote’s from last year’s blogs. I enjoyed rereading them and remembering when each piece was written. I look forward to the upcoming year so that I can learn more about my colleagues and also, continue to feel inspired.  
 
“Some people pass through our lives in a shorter time frame than we had hoped to teach us things they never could have taught if they stayed.” – Anonymous
 
“It’s about putting yourself out there to make it the best you can!” —Morgan Yearout
 
“Madrid especially has won my heart.” – Catalina Valdez-Dapena
 
“The most important relationship you have in life is with yourself.” – Michelle Nicchi
 
"It’s time to let go of the long hours and live a balanced life.”—Samantha LoDuca
 
“It is interesting to see the direct impact teachers have on the community.”—Justin Hughes-Coleman
 
“If I were to live my life as a punctuation mark, I always tell people I am a semicolon. Why? Because I just keep going.” – Lynnette Aizpurua
 
“Go with the flow.”—Leesa Truesdell
 
 “Sometimes you will never know the value of a moment until it becomes a memory.” – Dr. Seuss
 
“If you are brave enough to say goodbye, life will reward you with a new hello.” – Paulo Coehlo
 
“What's in a name? that which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet.” –William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet
 
With those very inspiring words, I would like to preview what’s to come in 2017.
 
Teacher Connection: Series 2 will be launched from it’s new home. Details will be coming.  Thank you so much to the teachers who have volunteered their experience and time. This series is going to highlight more of the classroom experiences each teacher is working on now.
 
Thank you to all of you for reading and sending messages about the blog. Your feedback combined with the memory of my grandma has inspired me to launch some new ideas this year. 
 
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The view from the top of Mt. Tiede!
 
Stay tuned!

Ciao for now,

Leesa with two EE's

12 Grapes

Happy 2017! Here's to the new year and the new me, I guess everybody is saying it. I came home for the holidays, it's been a while. I miss Spain. I need to get back. 

I have a story I want to tell the world. I thought, no better place to write it. Three weeks ago I was in Madrid, in Valdebernardo, teaching my super cool high schoolers. I just finished a presentation on my holiday traditions. Their task was to write a paragraph discussing similar topics. I walked around, reading over shoulders, editing, correcting grammar. It took me a good half a period to realize Diego, Jesus, Maria, Alba, Manuel, Jorge, Gemma, and every other thirteen year old in the classroom were attempting to form sentences around the same noun: grapes. Uvas

Grapes are good, delicious if it's hot outside, but I'm not crazy about having grapes as a winter holiday dessert. I didn't understand the obsession. Apple cobbler, hot chocolate, and peppermint bark por favor. It was eventually explained that Spain has a New Years Eve tradition, which involved grapes. 

Supposedly Spaniards count down the new year with the last twelve seconds instead of the last ten. In those twelve seconds, you eat twelve grapes. The goal is to eat one grape per second. I believe it's meant to bring you luck, wealth, love, and all that fun stuff. 

I was in Boston for the new year. I told all my friends about the grapes so we went to the seven-eleven down the road and picked out a bunch of grapes. Grapes from seven-eleven sound a little sketchy now that I'm reflecting back on the memory. 

12-11-10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1... I couldn't do it. It's not easy to chew that fast. My older brother once peeled and ate a clementine in ten seconds, he was going for the world record. 

I should have got my grape-eating countdown on video, as proof. Just believe me, I guess. Mostly it was me giggling, screaming, and shoveling grapes in my friends' mouths as well as my own. My friends and I made a pact to practice our grape-eating on the last Sunday of every month until new years eve came around again. Surely twelve days should be enough. Surely...

Keep life trill. Live Large and Sparkle.

XO,

Flo

Happy New Year, 12 Grapes Later

Though it's not quite New Year's for us in the states, a quick update from my phone :) we ate our grapes (celebrating the Spanish tradition, one for each month of the year) this evening when it turned 2017 in Spain! Twelve grapes later, we are feeling pretty lucky. Cheers!

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The music note that drops in Nashville

The Belén (Christmas Take 2)

As soon as I returned to school after the puente holiday, I began helping the art teacher to set up the nativity whenever my other teachers could spare me. The nativity scene (or belén) that my school set up was tied to India, the country that classes were paying special attention to this year. Every age of student created artwork for the belén: the young ones (infants age 3 & 4) painted stars and wrapped string around them to hang in the air above the scene, the next age level created snakes, the second and third graders painted elephants, the older students created houses and people figures out of cardboard and chess pieces.

Part of the goal of the project was to teach the children about the beautiful traditions and culture of India as well to bring awareness to the difficulties facing a country that is relatively newly-independent. As with any project, sometimes execution was a bit wonky (let's just say there was a video clip made in which the sixth graders said, "Our project this year is set in India. In India there is a lot of poverty. Merry Christmas!"), but I do think the children learned a lot about Indian history and gained a lifelong interest in a new country's culture and way of life. The kids loved reading stories about Divali (the Hindu Festival of Lights) around Halloween, which was extremely fun for me.

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The belén! It was setup right outside the comedor (dining hall), facing the front desk.

 

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A fuller view of the nativity. See the Indian flag in the background? A fellow CIEE auxiliar painted that!

One of the most exciting parts about the Christmas celebration at my school (It still feels strange to me from an American perspective to have holidays that are so tied to the Catholic Church; when I mentioned Chanukah, I had to explain the holiday to all of my students because they had never heard of it), though, is that the children all learn songs to perform in front of their parents. I work primarily with third grade and fourth grade (though I have classes with every other grade except first grade), so I learned their songs with them. They perform two English songs and a Spanish song, and third and fourth grade's songs were "Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree," "Happy Xmas (War Is Over)," and "La luz que nace en ti" ("The Light that shines from you"--literally it would be "the light that's born in you," but from what I understand of the song, I think the literal translation makes it sound like it is referring to the light that you shine with/your individuality and loses the point that the light is shining out of you, connecting you to all who see your light). They all had adorable dance moves to help remember the words to the songs; my kids would all "hop" on the line "at the Christmas party-hop" in "Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree." 

The children had so much fun, and the songs and belén were incredible. Seriously, the art teacher and religion teacher are so creative; no wonder there are so many Spanish master painters and artists.

Now all that's left to say is ¡Feliz Navidad y Prospero Año Nuevo!

Nollaig Shona Duit (Christmas Take 1)

Puente: literally "bridge," puente is the day (or a holiday weekend with this kind of day) that bridges a holiday (like the Immaculate Conception, which fell on a Thursday) to the weekend (so taking the Friday off after the Immaculate Conception). 

This makes for some incredible travel opportunities!

Having studied abroad in Dublin, I knew I wanted to get back while I was in Europe. It panned out beautifully that a friend of mine was directing a show for the Trinity College Dublin Drama Department's Debut Festival over the puente, so I traveled to Éire Thursday evening with a fellow CIEE auxiliar. 

Of course, the most important part of our visit was making sure we got to our favorite pubs in Christmas style. One of my favorite pubs (The Gingerman) always explodes holiday decorations (Halloween is exceptional there). 

 

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While at the Gingerman Pub

  

(As you can see)

Unfortunately, we were tired from traveling and a bit low on funds because of Christmas shopping, so we didn't get to do 12 Pubs of Christmas (we, uh, tuckered out around 4). However, what matters is not the number of pubs you go to but rather the number of quality friends and drinks you have at one pub. 

From St. Stephen's Green and Mall (where we saw the cutest all-male senior choir raising money for a hospital) to Old Library and the Book of Kells to Hodges Figgis to the General Post Office on O'Connell Street, I hope my friend (who was studying at Trinity at the time) and I showed off the stunning history and beauty and humor that is Dublin.

 

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The all-male senior choir!!!

 

Happy Christmas, all!

 

5 Spanish Trends

I don't consider this my New Years resolution list, because I have particular things on that list that I will be sharing for another time. 

Since living in Spain, I picked up on a few cultural trends in the lifestyle and fashion department. I'm turning this into a check list of things I want to add to my life in the new year- again, these are not my resolutions. 

1. Number one is going to be rollerblading. Rollerblading was my childhood. I would say I used to rollerblade with my next door neighbor the way some kids used to ride their bike. This was before the iPhone of course. Everybody rollerblades in Spain. Three kids I tutor: Jimena, Javier, and Gadea, rollerblade every Monday and Wednesday evenings in Retiro Park. Once, while walking out of The Good Burger (McDonalds on steroids) at around eleven o' clock at night, a couple was rollerblading by, holding hands and wearing light-up jewelry. 

I don't think about my rollerblading years too often, but Spain is sparking that part of my brain into action again. 

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2. Number two is dark lipstick. The kind of dark lipstick that Kylie Jenner is obsessed with. Dark purple, almost brown. Dark blue, almost black. Nobody wears pink lipstick. 'No pink lipstick' kills me. Anybody who knows me would say I was born with bubblegum pink lips. Pink lips are my thing. I've decided if picking a new lip color is what's required to fit in with the local chicas, then I choose a dark plum purple. I'll photograph my final selection.

3. The white sneakers. This could have been a trend in America as well, I've heard rumors about it. But everyone knows I was in Africa last year, so give me a little break- the trends still new to me. There isn't much to say about this other then, you must own a pair of white sneakers. Preferably Adidas, Puma, or Nike. If you wear New Balance, the Spaniards prefer those to be in color. It's about the only thing they would ever be caught dead wearing in a color other than black, dark purple, gray, or brown.

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4. The difference between platform shoes in America and platform shoes in Spain is that people in America just like to say they wear platforms, when in reality it's really only about a half inch subtle heel. Platform shoes in Spain are worn by everyone. Older women, high schoolers, strippers, young adults- everyone is wearing platforms. The platforms look like you just sawed off a block of wood from shop class and superglued it to the bottom of your boot and painted it black. Not going to lie, I love it, I want it, I need it.

5. Last I have pom poms. If you don't know what I'm talking about, the pom pom looks like a ball of fluff pinned to your back pack or purse like a key chain. A ball of fake fur, in other words. Or maybe real fur...

It's cool. It screams posh if worn with the proper outfit. I'm determined to add one of these to my collection of accessories as soon as I get my next pay check.  

I'm not in touch with American fashion as much as I used to anymore. It's sad but I also enjoy the slow evolution of what my wardrobe is turning into. It's a different life out here and sometimes writing these words isn't enough to capture the way I feel.

Live Large and Sparkle.

XO,

 

Flo 

Christmas in Spanish Schools

The holiday season is a magical time for all who celebrate Christmas, and even those who don't . This is no exception in Spain and its classrooms. 

I came to realize pretty early on that Spain and its education system is not secular. Religion classes are offered in public schools, and while parents can opt their children out of taking such classes, the idea of religion (really, Christianity) being taught in grade school was new to me. Spain's lack of secularism became particularly apparent during the month of December. Streets were lined with Christmas lights and Christmas trees popped up in every major plaza; although, this is quite normal for major cities, regardless of which country they're in. The schools participated in a furthering degree of the Christmas spirit.

Again, the schools were decked out with the regular Christmas decor: ornaments, garland, snowflakes, and other seasonal decorations. However, it was unique and a little surprising for me to notice all the nativity scenes throughout the school. From students' handmade shoe box versions to the official one constructed by elderly members of the town, this religious decor moved away from the commercialized decorations typically seen in schools. During the final days before break, each class went to see the town's handmade nativity scene. This year's was the scene of Bethlehem, and it was unlike anything I had ever witnessed. Every single item in the building, including the building itself, was handmade over the previous year (each year's is different from the year prior). You can check this year's and all the previous ones here: http://asociacionbelenistacamarma.blogspot.com.es/

(I apologize for the poor picture quality, these were taken via Snapchat on my iPhone 5S)

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Other holiday school festivities included a Christmas card competition across 6th grade, a school wide Christmas performance (for which students practiced their songs and dances for many hours), the reading of Christmas stories in the decked-out library, and writing letters to pen pals in Poland about their Christmas traditions. While this isn't intended to critique the Spanish way of celebrating the holiday season (I acknowledge that many public schools across the U.S. also participate in Christmas-themed traditions despite the fact that they're public schools), I found it interesting just how intense and religious Christmas celebrations are in public schools without, what it seemed like, consideration that not all students may participate in this holiday. (Note: Yes, Spain is a predominantly Catholic country, but there are many Muslim people living there, hailing from Northern Africa, Turkey, and the Middle East, and I'm sure, other religions, too.)

 

Happy Holidays!

Sarah

Cheetah Girls

When I was nine, a Disney Channel Original Movie was released that changed my world, The Cheetah Girls, starring Raven Symone, Adrienne Bailon, Sabrina Bryan, and Kiely Williams. Disney went on to produce a sequel, The Cheetah Girls 2.

YouTube can't seem to produce a good quality trailer. Here's the best its got:

 

The Cheetah Girls 2 is the story of four girlfriends who travel to Barcelona to become *~*SUPERSTARS~ !! I wanted to be just like them. I still do. In fact, four years ago I bought a cheetah print bodycon dress due to the mass amounts of cheetah girl soul that still burns within me. 

My mother, father, and grandparents came to Madrid for a visit. We had no big plans except for eating, drinking, shopping, and more drinking. I could live peacefully if I never ate a croquette again in my lifetime. Aside from this list, we had one other major task on our "to do" list. Can you guess? 

BARCELONA

We woke up at five in the morning to catch the six am speed train heading straight for that cheetah-licious destination. Our boy, Nicolas, showed us around the city. I liked him. He was young, but graying slightly. He had an earring that was not proportionate to his head size, and a flannel print flat cap. He was boss, and by my definition, quite trill. 

Our first stop was Museu Nacional D'art de Catalunya. Standing on the front steps you see an incredible view of the city. Clouds or sunshine, it's breathtaking.

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The four white columns in the picture above were my favorite architectural monuments of the city. I understand this sounds crazy considering Barcelona is the motherland of Gaudi. Sometimes all the grand designs in the world can't satisfy the unexplainable aesthetic pleasure found in the simplicity of these four columns. Who really knows, maybe these four columns are actually real ornate and I sound like an idiot. I didn't ask about their history. I find many times it's better to keep your own imagination than ruin it with facts. 

Moving on.

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This here was Gaudi's church. Gaudi was a famous Spanish Catalan architect if you haven't picked up on that yet. Gaudi died in a carriage-tram accident on his way to this church. It's lovely, isn't it, how the most elaborate, detailed, over the top designer finds haven in a place as bland and beautiful such as this. I get that this picture still portrays Europe, and to the normal eye this might look as far from bland as possible. Google image "Sagrada Familia"....catch my drift?

Barcelona is magical. I truly do love it. But as great as it is, Madrid is home, and always will be home as long as I live in Spain.

Live Large and Sparkle. 

XO,

 

Flo

 

ACCEPTED! The CIEE Application & Me

Hello Friend!

    I go by many names, partly because I love nicknames—but mostly because it’s hard for others to pronounce. My legal name is Kamala, pronounced like “Pamela” but with a “K”, but call me Kimi!

    A few quick things about myself: I was just recently honored with the role of an Official Blogger for CIEE, so here I am with my very first post! I am a proud alumna of Harvard University and Arizona State University. I’ve served as a university advisor and love to teach others and learn. I’m 26, with 3 degrees and a craving to explore the world!

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Photo by Gerson Abesamis | Harvard Graduation Photoshoot for my Master's degree | Cambridge, MA, USA

On to other important things, I was recently accepted to the Teach in Spain + 2 Week Immersion program and I’m extremely excited!

    If you haven't started yet, the CIEE application system is easy to navigate. You can conveniently save and submit one item at a time, and log out and come back and complete it later! So no excuses that you don’t have the time! 

    The resume part might trip you up--but no fear, I always gave my students this awesome easy-to-follow Harvard Resume guide here:

http://ocs.fas.harvard.edu/files/ocs/files/undergrad_resumes_and_cover_letters.pdf

    One more tip for scanning your degree or your passport photo, you can easily download the free app iScanner to your phone and just take pictures, send them to your email and instantly upload them from your computer. 

The personal statement took me the longest because it is asking WHO you are, WHY this path, and WHAT motivates you, PLUS it's PERSONAL! The CIEE personal statement asks you to answer certain questions and they're flexible on what format you use. I like essay-style, so I wrote the questions in Microsoft Word, answered them individually in paragraph form, then deleted the questions and wove the paragraphs together.

Personal-statement

For help on personal statement writing, I love this site: http://college.usatoday.com/2012/10/12/10-tips-for-writing-a-grad-school-personal-statement/.

 It briefly explains a grad school statement; but it can easily be catered to creating your CIEE personal statement. Plus it’s great practice for gap-year students who may eventually go on to graduate school! I know it can be hard to share about yourself, but do get a pair of eyes to look over your essay, someone you trust. Don't change it too much, just have them look out for grammatical errors, remember, the personal statement is about you! 

Now, I would love to share with you some reasons why I want to go to Spain!

Here is an excerpt from my CIEE personal statement:

    “I have a heart, mind and spirit that aches to consume knowledge, explore the world, taste different foods, live in the moment, educate, explore and to be exposed to all the beauties of culture. Spain innately offers the treasures and opportunities to satiate the pangs of this hunger. There is much to discover about the history of Spain through the Catholic churches, to housing the oldest operating restaurant in the world, to living a completely different lifestyle than I’m accustomed to. The very first savory appetizer that drew me into this country was served upon my very first day of 4th grade in one of my favorite classes appropriately named “Spanish”. My teacher had been inspired by the art and language of the country over her entire summer vacation and was now imparting that energy, insight and music into the ears of her students. I went home with a masterpiece of 64 different crayon colors on a sheet of paper, slightly crinkled at my fist, with the shape of Spain on it; with the city of Madrid in bold at its center. For Christmas, when most little girls asked for a Barbie Dream House and Game Boys, I wrote to Santa Clause for a globe. The world seemed so small on my globe. I could trace my finger a couple inches to the left across the ocean from North America to Europe, then just a couple inches more to the Philippines, my mother’s home country.

[…]

    ‘Learn to Change the World’ emblazoned every entrance and website of my Masters program at Harvard. These were the very words that initially inspired me to apply to the program to quell my intrinsic urge to create positive multicultural environments, fight social injustice, and to bridge the gap in health and educational disparities on a domestic and global scale. If I am truly to change the world, shouldn’t I have at least experienced the world?”

    Thank you for reading the first two paragraphs of my personal statement! 

    Aside from my craving for culture, I am most excited about experiencing Spain and other countries in Europe, becoming fluent in Spanish, crossing off a lot of items on my “bucket list”, blogging, making new friends and trying new foods and drinks! I’m nervous to leave my family, friends and dog children behind; but adventure calls to me, and I refuse to ignore it!

    Look out for more of my future posts on the VISA process, placement and adventures in Europe!

Abrazos,

Kimi

 

Kam in Grand Canyon
Photo by: Carlitos Hernandez | iPhone 6S | Grand Canyon, AZ (circa 2015)

 

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