There are phrases that say more than they initially seem to. Such phrases that, in addition to explaining or describing something, explain and describe the person who says them. When we met with Fernando to take photos for this interview, he had decided to bring a US flag (his country) in his backpack: “Apologies, it’s a bit dusty… I took it to the paella party!”
There it is, right from the start, such a sophisticated manner. It’s practically the same polite and close tact of the diplomat who he wants to become someday.
And not forgetting the summary of his first year with us as a student of Political Sciences: an American perfectly integrated into campus life that proudly displays his origins: “I will always work trying to defend the interests of my country and the possibility of a diplomatic career attracts me a lot,” he says when we ask about his future as a professional. A future that Fernando already knows will be halfway between Europe and the US.
“I want to know how European and Spanish politics works in depth, and what their institutions are like on the inside. I would also like to be able to run an election campaign in my country someday,” he tells us.
Nobody ever said that being more than 9,000 kilometres from home was going to be easy. Especially, the first few days: “Before coming I knew that I would have to overcome many challenges. That’s what it’s all about after all, is not it? When you arrive there are lots of things happening at once, and many conflicting feelings, but if you focus and work little by little you find your place. Today I can say that thanks to studying here I have friends from all over the world.”
We have managed to make you feel a little more at home…
I like the Spanish culture. It is true that there are things that I am still in the process of accepting. For example, you all speak very directly, in my country it is different. But in general, it’s not such a big jump. In addition, there are aspects of day-to-day life that I love and that I have already adopted: I love eating so late!
He also tells us that he is very much at ease with how things work at CEU UCH, with both the Political Science degree and our Political Marketing degree that he studies in parallel: “The quality of the professors is extraordinary and it is appreciated, just like the degree of intimacy and closeness that you can have with them in any matter related to your studies or your projects.”
He says it will not be long before he starts to arrange his first international mobility. From what he says, and the level of knowledge that he already has about the mobility programmes the university offers, he can do more than one: “Being in a university like this opens international doors for me and I intend to take advantage of it, both through the Santander Iberoamérica Scholarship and the Erasmus + Programme. In fact, I would like to do an Erasmus semester at an Italian university.”
We do not know about Italy, but you surely do not miss the Californian palm trees here…
Nor the sun! The truth is that life in Valencia is splendid. The city is a “beaut”. And my first Fallas… it was crazy! Everyone should experience these parties at least once in their lives.