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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at UCSB chapter.

Name: Karla AnguloYear: 4th Year

Major(s)/Minor(s): Global Studies/History with a minor in Portuguese

Hometown: Lakeside, San Diego

If having a double major and a minor isn’t enough to juggle, Karla Angulo proves studying abroad is truly worth while! You’ll never guess where she spent her 21st birthday. Hint: It wasn’t IV!

What programs have you been involved in your years at UCSB?

I was a part of La Familia Mentorship Program, which allowed me to mentor the first years who were living on the Chican@/Latin@ floor. I was also a part of Rays of Empowerment, which was a club on campus geared towards raising awareness for domestic violence. I am currently a Global Intern in the EAP office, where I help promote study abroad and talk to students about my experience as a “returnee”.


How have they helped you have the “senior experience” you have now?

All of the programs that I’ve been involved with have allowed me to create amazing friendships with some of the most wonderful people I’ve ever met. I am still friends with many of the people that I mentored as well as my fellow “Rays”, and interning with EAP has allowed me to work with people that have helped me with future programs such as UCDC. As a senior the greatest thing is to be surrounded by people who have been there for you during your most important times of your life and that is how it’s been for me. 

You studied abroad in Brazil for a year. How was that experience?

It was absolutely amazing. In the beginning I was completely out of my comfort zone, which allowed me to learn a lot about myself and it helped me grow as a person. I learned to be patient with people and be more open-minded with food. I found it to be such a unique experience to be able to not only visit a foreign country but to actually live there and study there, it was such an amazing opportunity.


What made you decide to study in Brazil?

I began learning Portuguese winter quarter of my Freshman year and I absolutely fell in love with the language. Around that same time I had heard of EAP and decided that I wanted to study abroad somewhere so I decided that if I wanted to become fluent in Portuguese I would need to be completely immersed in the language and so Brazil was the perfect place to go. Also I did some research and saw that the 2014 World Cup was going to be hosted in Brazil so that was definitely a bonus! 

What are some of the coolest experiences that you went through in Brazil that you otherwise wouldn’t have experienced in I.V.?

Well to start off I actually spent New Year’s Eve in Rio de Janeiro, which is one of the cities biggest holidays. I also experienced Brazil’s famous “Carnaval” which was so much fun (imagine IV’s Halloween and Deltopia x100). I was able to take a trip to Peru and visit Machu Picchu which was incredible. I was able to spend my 21st birthday in the most populous city in the America’s, Sao Paulo, and I was able to go to a couple of World Cup games. Ultimately though the coolest experience was being fortunate enough to take various field trips throughout Rio de Janeiro with my Brazilian peers from PUC-Rio. During these field trips we were able to go to many places, that many tourists don’t normally go to, and thus we got to see a whole different part of Rio that really gave me insight to the lives of many Cariocas (people from Rio). I will never forget those trips.


Are you involved in the EAP office?

Yes, I am a Global Intern at the EAP office, which means I help out once a week with projects around the office, or tabling in the Arbor. Last quarter I actually helped out with students who were applying to an EAP program and that was so much fun because I got to talk to many of them about my experience and about how life changing study abroad really is.  I also go to as many informational and pre-orientation meetings for the Brazil programs as I can so that I can talk to the students that are planning to go to Brazil.

What are your plans after graduating UCSB?

Although this is my last quarter here at UCSB, I plan on going to UCDC for the fall so that I can get some experience interning in a government agency. After that I will hopefully have a clearer picture of what it is that I want to do as a career and then I will decide where to go from there.

What career field or dream job do you plan to achieve with your major(s)?

 At the moment I am not exactly sure where my studies will lead me next but eventually my ideal job would be to work for the United Nations or for Amnesty International.

What will you miss the most out of UCSB/IV when you leave?

 I will miss the overall UCSB/IV community, because I feel that since everything here pretty much revolves around college students it has been so comforting to live around people who are going through a lot of the same things that I am going through. In the future I plan on living in a big metropolitan city so I know that at one point or another I will miss this small town.


Any advice for prospective UCSB students?

I would advise them to try and get the most out of their “college experience” as possible, which means taking classes about something they know nothing about, joining clubs, learning a new language and most importantly studying abroad! Don’t get me wrong, UCSB is amazing and I’ve loved every quarter I’ve been here, but there is so much too learn from studying abroad, even if it’s just for one month during the summer.  You learn new customs, meet new people, and have a great appreciation for you life back home. 

Elizabeth Vasquez graduated from UC Santa Barbara back in 2016 with a BA in English. Elizabeth currently resides in the Silicon Valley area and works for Modern Luxury Silicon Valley magazine as a marketing & events coordinator. When she isn't working, Elizabeth enjoys dining out with friends, reading a book and spending time with her two dogs. See what she is up to on Instagram: @iamelizabethvasquez and on Twitter: @MissElizabethLV
Mya McCann is a fourth year literature student in the College of Creative Studies at UCSB. She currently lives in Bangkok, Thailand and is in the business of running BKK. On the weekends you can find Mya either in the jungle or on an island. On the weekdays she studies Thai and Buddhism and teaches English to sex workers in the red light district. You can follow her adventures on IG: MyaJoy