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International Students and Scholars

Adriana Estrada

Class of 2015

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I was born in Guatemala City, in the bosom of a large family.  Being the youngest with 4 older siblings was positive because I was constantly learning from them.  On the other hand, for my parents it was never an easy task to look after 5 children.  Even though they faced difficult situations while bringing us up, they always put in an extra effort giving us what they believed was important- love, care and education. It was the latter I considered a privilege since many children from Guatemala lacked access to education. Therefore I was determined to take advantage of all the benefits that education would bring me.

Unfortunately, education in Guatemala had always meant a teacher talking and students listening. I was never interested in learning how to write or how to add numbers (although that was something I would eventually learn). I was more interested in “how to think.” My interest was ambitious and it provided me the attainment of an scholarship to study in one of the best schools in Guatemala. Consequently, I had the opportunity to attend Lester B. Pearson College of the Pacific, UWC Canada.

This would be the first time I traveled outside my country and the first time I was far from my family. This idea appeared somehow scary though it was exciting and it would allow me the discovery of other places, cultures and myself. Being at Pearson represented a challenge since I did not know English when I first got there. This situation would have been disadvantageous, but the help of teachers and friends was encouraging.

I ended up having a rewarding experience in which I could grow academically and personally. Every day at Pearson involved being aware of global issues, doing service, recycling, composting and, of course, having fun. I was able to develop my artistic skills such as dancing, writing and drawing. Moreover, I was able to reinforce the confidence in myself by being surrounded by people with ideals similar to mine.

I realized that my initial interest in knowledge had expanded to an interest in values, personal challenge, voluntary service and finally an interest in continuing to learn abut other cultures.

I had the sense that at Lewis & Clark the interests before mentioned would become a necessity and this is the reason why I considered Lewis & Clark.  My plan so far is to major in Psychology since I am extremely interested in human behavior, though I would also love to explore Neuroscience or anything related to it. Finally, I hope Lewis & Clark will be the place where dreams do not exist because they are already a reality.

United World College

Lester B. Pearson United World College of the Pacific (Canada)