Recent alumnus, Danielle Miller is combining her passion for science and for Spanish as a Fulbright research grant recipient in Spain. She is conducting biomedical research in “Solid-phase synthesis and NMR characterization of microcin J25 and analogues” at the Institute for Research in Biomedicine at the Barcelona Science Park.
According to the Fulbright web site, there were almost 100 applicants for the 24 grants awarded in Spain.
A Doylestown, Pa. resident, she majored in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, and Spanish, with a minor in Chemistry. She wass active in Phi Alpha Psi, was a UC EMS captain, an Admission tour Guide, and a member of the Biochemistry Club and Beardwood Chemical Society.
Learn more about her study abroad experience in Madrid, Spain in the Spring of her junior year:
I studied abroad in Madrid, Spain for the spring semester of my junior year (2013). There I attended La Universidad de Carlos III de Madrid in Getafe where I took five classes. All the classes were conducted in Spanish–four with all American/foreign students and one with all Spanish students. I lived with a Spanish host mom with whom I spoke mostly Spanish. The abroad program, CIEE, organized weekend retreats for us to Toledo, Segovia, Palma de Mallorca, Bilbao, and Valencia for the celebrations of Las Fallas, as well as other cultural activities within the city of Madrid.
Most Valuable About the Experience
Studying abroad was the most exhilarating and influential experience of my life so far. Through learning another culture and language by complete immersion I developed a greater sense of self, something I had not even realized I was lacking. I gained a fuller understanding of the world and the individual’s role in society. I had the time of my life meeting a variety of people each with unique histories and goals and, for the first time I truly grasped that our lives are our creations and the world is ours.
The Coolest Part of the Experience
The best part of this experience was the complete cultural immersion. Although the CIEE staff was always there for support, I enjoyed the amount of freedom I had to experience Madrid and Spain for myself. The greatest reward was the satisfaction I felt in my last weeks abroad, after a semester of stepping out of my comfort zone, I could finally personally and naturally connect with the locals in Spanish. Understand and speaking Spanish had become second nature as I was easily conversing with those who knew not a word of English. The night before my flight home I watched a live play in Spanish. Understanding every word and laughing along with the crowd was a greatly satisfying representation of how much my Spanish language skills had progressed.
Who I Met that Made a Difference
The most influential person during my study abroad experience was my host mom, Carmen. In addition to becoming a second mother to me, taking care of me when I was sick and getting to know me on a personal level, she was extremely involved in teaching me the Spanish language and culture. She introduced me to many of her closest friends, who became my Spanish family, and she included me in Spanish celebrations including Father’s and Mother’s Days, the Day of Madrid’s Saint, San Isidro, and the King’s Cup soccer celebrations. I still keep in contact with her and plan to visit her in the near future.