Continuing our series on getting to know the Study Abroad Office, I want to introduce you to our other Peer Advisor, Alejandra. If you’ve walked into the office or gone through the application process to study abroad, you’ve probably encountered a Peer Advisor. As Peer Advisors, we help prospective participants begin the process by directing them to resources like programs, scholarships, websites, etc. We also help promote study abroad on campus by giving presentations about study abroad, and we help keep office resources updated and current.
Alejandra has been a Peer Advisor since August 2010. Alejandra studied for the Spring 2010 semester at Masaryk University in Brno, Czech Republic. By going to a university settled in a country that speaks a completely different language, Alejandra challenged herself to go out and learn Czech lifestyles and even pick up some of the difficult Czech language. She was able to find many courses which enhanced her majors and even found courses not taught at OSU for which she could gain credit.
1. What is your major? I am a double major in Political Science and Sociology. I also have a minor in Economics.
2. What do you want to do with your degrees when you graduate? I want to work for the US Department of State, ideally as a Foreign Service Officer.
3. If you were a spice, which would you be? I’d be chili powder because I’m Mexican.
4. What are five things you can’t live without? 1. My phone! I would die without it. 2. Chocolate 3. Friends, Family, and people 4. Sudoku 5. Music.
5. You recently became a US citizen. What was the process like? It was pretty intense. On the plus side, I won’t have to deal with immigration anymore and I have a US passport, so it will be easier to travel in and out of the US. But, it took a long time because of some mistakes someone made on some paperwork. It was also just a hard decision to make. It was sort of like splitting my identity in two.
6. If you could have any superpower, which would you choose to have? Of course, I’d love to be able to fly, but I’d really like to know what people were thinking.
7. What is your favorite part of being a Peer Advisor? I like talking to students and being able to see what people are envisioning for their study abroad adventures. I also like giving people new ideas.
8. If you were a car, which would you be? I like Jeeps, but my personality isn’t outdoorsy enough, so probably a boxy Volvo or BMW because they are cool and retro, but dependable.
9. Do you have a secret indulgence? I really like Glee and listening to Justin Bieber! 🙂
10. What is something most people don’t know about you? I am a certified square dancer! I even used to have the petticoat and dresses. Also, I didn’t learn English until I was nine years old.
11. What is your favorite place to:
- Sightsee?: I’m probably biased to the forests and countryside in the Czech Republic, but Edinburgh, Scotland is great.
- Visit someday?: Thailand
- Live someday?: Somewhere warm like southern Spain. I like Italy, but Spain would probably suit me better.
12. What advice would you give to students interested in study abroad? Think outside the box. Try new things. Don’t just go to another country and hang out with the same people and do the same things you would at home. Put yourself out there and challenge yourself to meet new people and try new things.
13. What is your favorite memory from your study abroad? All of the trips I went on. All of my best memories come from those. One time, I got stuck at an airport for 20 hours, but then scored an awesome apartment to stay in. There was also a reggae party when I was visiting Sicily with lots of young people. It was fun to party with them in a courtyard with great music.
14. What is your best memory as a Peer Advisor? The times I’ve come in to a party from my coworkers (birthday, citizenship, etc.) Also, when students come in and say “I’ve got it figured out and I’m ready to apply”.
15. How do you say “thanks for reading” in your favorite language? Italian: Grazie per la lettura!
Thanks Alejandra for answering these questions and letting us get to know you better! Come by and visit Alejandra in the Study Abroad Office and you’ll be glad to get to know someone who you can discuss not only study abroad, but Glee, Justin Bieber, and many other fun topics! Gracias everyone and until next time! 🙂