Language and culture academic semester
My experience studying abroad at TANDEM and living in Madrid has been a life-changing experience for me. I have an anxiety disorder that I have had since I was a child. Studying abroad in a Spanish speaking country is one of my requirements at Lander University as a Spanish major. Because of my anxiety, I tried to wiggle my way out of coming. It wasn’t because I didn’t want to—it was because I was terrified. Before this trip I had never been out of the southern states of the USA, much less been to another country. Also, I had never been on a plane, train, metro, or city bus, or lived in a big city. EVERYTHING was new to me! The people at TANDEM helped me get settled in and learn the ropes of city life. There was definitely a learning curve for a country girl coming from a city of 27,000 people.
My Spanish has improved tremendously from my time at TANDEM and living with a Spanish family. While I still have much more to learn, I’m satisfied at how much I have learned at TANDEM and living abroad. I now understand why Lander wouldn’t let me wiggle my way out of coming. My Spanish would have never improved in such a short period of time without TANDEM and living in Spain. The classes are interesting and all the teachers are very good at what they do. There were activities to engage your mind during class, instead of simply taking notes and doing homework.
At TANDEM, I had classes with people of different nationalities, races, and ages, and I loved that aspect. Each person taught me something different. I met so many great friends that I hope to see again in the future and keep in contact with.
This experience has opened my eyes to so many new things and that is priceless. The world is so much bigger to me now and I will return home with a new outlook and better Spanish! I would not trade my experience at TANDEM and living in Madrid for anything. I hope to return in the near future!