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¡Adiós Estados Unidos, y hola Argentina! (Translated: Goodbye United States, and Hello Argentina!)

Alesha Garand
June 21, 2019

If you have read the other introduction on my page, you already know that I am a future teacher and have a deep love for exploring culture. What you may not know is how much this trip to Argentina really means to me. I have placed all my dreams on the hopeful result of Spanish fluency. I have studied Spanish for approximately seven years. Throughout that time, my education has focused on reading and writing, giving me little exposure to the oral language component. The result is that I am confident in my knowledge of Spanish, but not in verbally expressing that knowledge. My confidence in my Spanish skills has been shaken a few times throughout the years; most recently, I was informed that my Spanish skills were not strong enough to teach in that language. I am passionate about teaching in dual language (Spanish and English). As I continue to search for my place in the realm of dual-language education and prepare for my study abroad experience in Argentina, I have an internal battle about whether or not I am good enough. Will this program boost my skills as much as I hope it will? Will I be able to teach in a dual-language setting, or is it just an unreachable dream? These are the trepidations that I bring with me to Argentina. While I am overjoyed at the opportunity to experience language and culture, I have placed high stakes on this trip. My confidence and speaking skills are the battles I hope to win in Argentina.

There are so many emotions and expectations that swirl around my brain when I think about this trip. It is difficult to imagine that in a few days I will be landing in the airport, meeting my host family, and beginning my seven-week cultural experience. The excitement bubbles inside me; doubts lurk in the shadows of my mind; the spirit of adventure runs through my veins. There is so much that I will not truly understand until I am standing on the soil of Buenos Aires. To prepare, I have been reviewing using Complete Spanish Grammar, watching telenovelas, and listening to music in Spanish. While I continue to feel like I should do more, the language preparation will hopefully help ease me into the immersion setting. My bags are packed, and I am as prepared as I possibly can be. ¡Adiós Estados Unidos, y hola Argentina! ("Goodbye United States, and hello Argentina!")

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Alesha Garand

<p>I am an elementary education student; with a Spanish minor, ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) endorsement, and leadership certificate. My passions focus on exploring new cultures. Recently I explored Philippian culture through Tinikling (a form of dance) and Spanish through reading various Latin American authors. I also enjoy expressing myself through art, particularly painting. My mission is to become a dual language education teacher (with Spanish and English) so that I can spread a love and appreciation for culture and language to my future students.</p>

Term:
2019 Summer 1, 2019 Summer 2
Home University:
University of Portland
Hometown:
Newberg, OR
Major:
Education
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