Yajaira Hernandez - Alix-en Provence, France
Name: Yajaira Hernandez
Major: International Relations
Languages: English, Spanish, French
Study Abroad Program: Aix-en-Provence Fall 2011 Institute for American Universities
International Experience: I studied abroad in Aix-en-Provence for a semester and lived with a host family. Because of the easy availability of traveling within Europe I was able to visit many places including Spain, Italy, Belgium, Germany, Luxemberg, Switzerland, Monaco.
Why I wanted to be a Peer Advisor in the Study Abroad office: I initially started seeking to do a semester in South Africa, but that was not possible at the time and then I began to take French and I knew that I had to speak it and be immersed in a culture to fully understand and further my skills. I had decided to go to Morocco and last minute changed to Provence, France. I know how hard it can be to pick a location since USD has so many brilliant programs and knew that if I could help in anyway as others helped me, I would like to.
Best advice for students planning to study abroad: Go with no expectations, be open minded, and most importantly be yourself. If one has no expectations than everything becomes a pleasant adventure and always be who you are. Being in a different place can be nerve wrecking especially if they speak another language, but try, people love it when foreigners attempt to speak because it shows that they care and truly want to become immersed. Be open minded as so many opportunities will surface that you never thought imaginable.