API Cultural Liaisons Program
Students in the 21st century are expected to graduate with a variety of skills that go beyond disciplinary knowledge. Adaptability, cultural empathy, tolerance for ambiguity, strong intercultural communication skills, a collaborative work ethic, and intellectual curiosity are all valued in the complex landscape of international relations and global business.
Our “Cultural Liaisons” program offers students the opportunity to further develop their leadership skills in the context of a new culture, preparing them for future professional roles. In addition to the rich experience of study abroad, these students will benefit from an added dimension by serving as facilitators between their peers and the host culture. They will be responsible for exploring Spanish culture, motivating their fellow students to engage in local life, and organizing opportunities for group reflection on cultural similarities and differences. A Spanish student will serve as the local counterpart to API “Cultural Liaisons” to help them in their tasks.
Meet Our Current API Cultural Liaisons
Mary Charlotte Buck
Mary Charlotte is a junior at Stonehill College in Massachusetts, where she majors in Religious Studies and Spanish. She is very excited to study abroad, because she loves to travel, see new things, and meet new people. At school, Mary Charlotte volunteers as an SAT tutor for underserved high school students, works as an orientation leader, and is also a part of a leadership program focused on diversity and social justice. She is eager to learn more about the world during this experience and have the absolute best time in Spain!
Alison is a Senior at the University of Florida, majoring in Political Science, Spanish and Latin American Studies. She was born and raised in Sarasota, Florida. Alison is a member of the Model United Nations team at UF and also active in the Spanish department. She spent the summer of 2012 participating in an international service learning trip to the Dominican Republic, where students taught the English language to kids aged 5-10, and taught social skills through team-building exercises. In her spare time, Alison enjoys running, biking and playing soccer. While in Spain she looks forward to immersing herself in the culture and helping the other students do so as well – OH, and of course eating delicious food!
Kelsey is from Los Angeles, CA and is studying Communication Studies–Human Relations at the University of Texas in Austin. She is a member of a sorority, an honors fraternity, and loves to play soccer in her free time. She is looking forward to immersing herself in Spanish culture and encouraging her peers to do the same.
Emily is studying Spanish at Mississippi State University, where she is involved in the Spanish Club, French Club, International Student Organization for Languages and Culture, and her sorority. She enjoys running, reading, and traveling. Emily hopes to have the time of her life in Seville, learning about the culture and establishing friendships, while taking advantage of the unique opportunity of studying abroad.
Kyle is a sophomore at Pitt-Johnstown, a branch campus of the University of Pittsburgh, where he studies Communication/Public Relations and Spanish. He also interns at a non-profit that provides tutoring to children of low-income families. Kyle is looking forward to fully immersing himself in the Spanish culture and getting to know everyone!
Cultural Liaison Correspondent
Christine O’Dea is serving as the first-ever “Correspondent” of the Cultural Liaisons program, simultaneously working on a travel journalism course through Matador U and reporting on CL events and activities throughout the semester. Christine is a student at Hofstra University in New York, majoring in Mass Media Studies and minoring Sociology. She is the PR/Marketing Chair for two Hofstra organizations and a writer for NkdMag.com. An avid traveler, photographer, and writer, Christine is learning to combine all three with MatadorU during her semester in Sevilla, courtesy of API. She enjoys music, environmentalism, Instagram, and chocolate.
Kathleen is studying at Ohio University where she is majoring in Global Studies-Europe and Spanish and minoring in Business and Linguistics. She also works on campus as an RA. Last summer, Kathleen received her Teaching English as a Foreign Language license in Cuenca, Ecuador. While in Spain, she hopes to improve her Spanish and make local connections.