You may know her from the tutoring center at Campbell, or you may have just seen her gorgeous smile around campus, but if you’ve had the pleasure of meeting Campbell Collegiette™ Joanna Coda, then it’s no surprise that she’s this week’s Campus Celebrity. In addition to tutoring English, Joanna also teaches ESL to Masters students at Campbell, is an ambassador for the College of Arts and Sciences, and volunteers at a local pregnancy center. Talk about a busy Collegiette™! When Joanna is not busy being a Good Samaritan, she enjoys writing music, going deep-sea fishing and anything involving the ocean.
Where are you from?
I was born in Fairfax, VA, but grew up in Apex, NC.
Tell me about your family. Any pets?
I love my family. My parents are my rock and my three older sisters my inspiration. I also have two nieces; I adore them!
What is your major?
I am an English major with a minor in Communication Studies.
I understand that you travelled with Campbell’s Study Abroad program? Please tell me about your experience.
Campbell works with many different programs; I chose a program based in PA called "Arcadia" to travel to Sicily to study at the Mediterranean Center for Arts and Sciences. I lived in an apartment with three other American girls and was able to sight-see as well as get involved in the community.
What was your favorite thing about the trip?
My second week there, I stumbled upon some American missionaries who introduced me to a local church. The relationships I made at the church are my favorite part of my trip. Families from the church frequently invited me to stay at their homes and eat Sunday lunches with them. We generally spent about half of each week together and I built strong friendships that I will always treasure. Some of my favorite memories are of sharing meals, riding mopeds, laughing lots, and spending Easter with these friends. I was not only able to experience Sicilian culture on a personal level, but was also able to see God's kind provision for me in a time that could have been lonely. My friends were a constant encouragement to me, made sure I was safe, and threw a going away party for me when I left. I often flip through the scrapbook they made for me and remember how God answered my prayers.
What advice would you give to future Study Abroad students?
If there is somewhere you've always wanted to go, go there; put aside your fears and invite the challenge. Once you're there, embrace the experience; try everything you can in good conscience try, become involved in the community, and get to know the people and culture surrounding you.
What is your favorite thing about the Creek?
I love the small size of the campus. I love the country roads I take to get there. And I love the English faculty who have become like family.
What are your ambitions for the future?
I try to take life as it comes and not make too many plans, but I'd love to work with college students in International Study or teach ESL overseas.
What is your favorite food?
Anything Sicilian - fish, pasta, cannoli, brioche, and lasagna.
What is your favorite book?
Asking an English major this question is like asking a mother to chose a favorite child, but the two that I can read over and over are An Old Fashioned Girl by Louisa May Alcott and One Writer's Beginnings by Eudora Welty.
What do you typically do in your spare time?
In my spare time I: read, fish, sing, play sports, watch sports, and take road-trips.
What are the Top 3 things on your bucket list?
Go to faraway places, live beside the sea, and do something to make the world more beautiful.
Photo Credits: Chiara Cammaraccia