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IES Abroad Madrid Alum Amanda Gorman Shares Her Study Abroad Story

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IES Abroad
January 12, 2021

Artist, activist, IES Abroad Madrid alum, and more. These are just a few of the many descriptors for the first-ever U.S. National Youth Poet Laureate, Amanda Gorman, who recently spoke at the inauguration of President Joe Biden.

In this video, Amanda Gorman shines light on her IES Abroad experience and study abroad journey, starting with a few hiccups: the pushback she received when considering study abroad and an unexpected case of appendicitis. Amanda continues to discuss the support she received from IES Abroad both inside and outside the classroom from staff and faculty alike, while highlighting her personal growth and the opportunities to enhance her poetic prowess.

“Across the board, in every single class I was in, the teachers recognized that my passion for coming to Spain was so much larger than just being in the classroom,” Amanda shares. “It was about 'how will this experience at IES Abroad Madrid making me a better poet, a better person, and a better student so that when I come back to Harvard, I have all of those blessings to take with me.'”

We know firsthand how study abroad has the power to hone passions and define careers. Amanda shares such in stating, “It was so life-changing and phenomenal; I don’t think that I would be who I am today without that experience.”

Closing the video with a heartwarming thank you, Amanda reminds us of our number-one goal at IES Abroad: to do right by our students. “I just want to thank IES Abroad for making me feel safe, making me feel beloved, and making me feel like the sky is the limit when you study abroad.”

From the bottom of our hearts, Amanda, thank you for sharing your talents with IES Abroad and the world.

Want to hear more about the impact of study abroad on not only Amanda's life, but other notable IES Abroad alumni? Check out "How Amanda Gorman exemplifies the poetry and power of study abroad" written for The PIE News by IES Abroad's Senior Associate Vice President of Marketing, Amy Ruhter McMillan.

Learn more about our programs in Madrid, explore Creative Writing study abroad programs, and start your IES Abroad adventure today.

“It was so life-changing and phenomenal; I don’t think that I would be who I am today without that experience.”
Amanda Gorman • Madrid, Spring '19
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