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IES Granada
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Melissa Mendoza

Major: International Relations
Minor: Global Security
Hometown: Greenwich, CT

How did you learn about this opportunity?

I had always known I wanted to study abroad, so I looked online on the Global Website and talked to the Study Abroad Office about different programs. Eventually, I decided that this was the best opportunity for me. 

Tell us a little bit about your experience.

It has been a life-changing experience. The professors at the center are great and I find the classes very interesting. I love Granada and I think that it is a perfect fit for me. Outside of class, I have had the opportunity to travel to places that I've always wanted to go to, like Amsterdam and Morocco, during the weekend! The food is great here and I've met so many great people and have also had the opportunity to interact with locals. I have enjoyed everything about this experience.

"Outside of class, I have had the opportunity to travel to places that I've always wanted to go to, like Amsterdam and Morocco, during the weekend!"

How did this experience impact you academically?

I have been taking three classes in Spanish and two in English. The opportunity to take classes in a different language has made me a more well-rounded student overall. I have also had the opportunity to experience a completely different system of education, which has taught me how to adapt. Lastly, I have learned how to better manage my time with studying and other activities such as travelling.

What are your career goals and plans?  How did this experience impact them?

I am majoring in International Relations, so this experience has given me some international experience, which is great for my future career. My career goals are either working for an NGO or getting a position with the government. I have had the opportunity to talk to people that work for NGOs and talk about their daily life. I am also helping with some research at the University of Granada by helping translate their Brexit project. This experience has pushed me to pursue my career goals further.

Would you recommend this experience to other Liberal Arts students?

I would absolutely recommend this experience to other Liberal Arts students. It has been a life-changing opportunity with many cool experiences. I was on the fence about it at first even as I was applying but now I can't imagine not studying abroad. I encourage everyone to do it, Penn State will always be there but you might never get the opportunity to go abroad for four months again.

For more information on global opportunities for Liberal Arts students, visit our website
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