My first word was "más," meaning "more" in Spanish, and I believe it's this curiosity, the desire to learn more, see more, experience more, that has motivated me to pursue a major in Chinese and to study abroad with IES Abroad in Beijing. My life has been shaped by my travels; I was raised bilingual, and have lived in Mexico, Chile, and Spain. I knew from the moment I first arrived in China, for a two month study abroad when I was fourteen, that Chinese would be important to me. Since then, Chinese has become a regular part of my life: as a freshman and sophomore in the Honors Humanities College I wrote a novel based off of Chinese history, and I participate regularly in events with other Chinese majors and Chinese international students as President of my university's Project Pengyou chapter. My desire to learn more of Chinese language and culture propels me to go to China as often as I can, and I am excited to further my studies this spring with IES Abroad in Beijing.
Even though the University of Maryland is in the suburbs of D.C., my hometown is located in a very rural area and it can be difficult to get around and get to know the area. I can't wait to live in a big city like Beijing and experience the most that China has to offer (with the help of cheap public transportation)!