Studying abroad through ALBA is a unique experience for every individual. The program gives students the ability to make their experience whatever they want it to be. Whether that means taking Spanish classes to perfect a second language, working on professional development, or focusing on exploring a new country! For former student and current employee Allie this program was that and so much more!

From Student to Employee

Allie is an Oregon State University student studying speech communication with a minor in Spanish. She studied abroad in Barcelona for the first time in the summer of 2017 following her second year at OSU. When looking for a program she stumbled upon ALBA. A program with a structure that allowed her to make it her own it; a program that sounded like an adventure. Once she was here she fell in love with the city and the program leading to her role as a student ambassador.

Throughout her third year at OSU Allie worked as a student ambassador sharing her experience with other prospective students. Her position gave her professional experience in marketing and sales. While allowing her to work for a program she loves and promote an experience she believes in. Her favorite part of the position is meeting new people with similar views as her. ALBA attracts, “People who make their own path and are more free spirited. There’s a sense of adventure in everyone who comes here”. While this experience was amazing through these conversations Allie realized that she wasn’t quite done explore Barcelona.

Luckily her role as an ambassador offered her the opportunity to come back to Barcelona for summer 2019. This time she held a leadership role in the program and changed her perspective. She took the time to explore the city from a new perspective focusing on the more local aspects. This time she was putting less pressure on herself to learn the language and hit all the landmarks. Realizing that:

“a smile and kindness is all you need. Always smile and don’t take life to seriously when studying abroad”.

In addition to the city itself she brings up how ALBA creates a unique experience for every participant. Stating that ALBA is a small program where the relationships we build with each other, the staff, and the city are unique. The combination of staff and students from different schools and places. Creates an atmosphere that truly makes Spain feel like a second home. More than that however it creates an adventurous community that supports you through your own unique adventure!