Santa Clara University

Sandy Novarro '12

International Ambassador


Why do you want to serve as an International Ambassador at Santa Clara University?
I want to serve as an international ambassador because I feel that my experiences can help guide prospective students in their final decision as to wear they would like to study or if they have questions about the program I took part in I could help answer them. I know it helped me a lot to listen to the ambassadors talk about there experiences so I want to help the next group of students in the same way because it not only helps but it also gets students more excited about going abroad.
What were the deciding factors in choosing your study abroad program-location?
For me it was not only the location but what the program had to offer like getting an internship. For me I really was looking for an internship and knowing that I would have one guaranteed for me once I got there was a relief.
Describe a defining moment in your abroad experiences and how that experience(s) has affected you personally, intellectually, vocational, spiritually, or academically.
It was a simple as getting on the tube to get to work, when I felt that defining moment that affected me personally. The second week into my internship I realized how familiar everything felt to me even though I was in another country. Sitting in the train noticing those who entered were all headed to work and then the few tourists who just wanted to get an early start in London. I would put on my headphones and drink my coffee as the train took me to Covent Garden was such a cool experience that made me feel like such an adult and not just a college student. Then getting off the train I worked my way through the hectic morning crowd to get on the lift just in time before it closed. Just standing in the cluster of people for those 30 seconds made me feel literally close to the Brits and then leaving the tube station to make my way to work was one of the best parts of the day. Knowing that I would have to do this again didn't bother me, it just made me feel proud of myself.
What advises, recommendations would you give to prospective study abroad students? In retrospect, how would you prepare differently to maximize the study abroad experience?

I would save up as much money as possible because London is a very expensive city. I would also practice my cooking skills and try to make dinner a couple of nights at home first so that way you know a few recipes that you can make on your own. If you are going to travel outside of the country just keep that in mind before you leave and think of places you like to visit so that way you know where you want to go and give yourself options just incase you can't go to the city you wanted.Bring plenty of underwear just in case you don't wash your clothes as often as you would like.