Published: August 23, 2017
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By: Nicole Berry, San Diego State University
Category: Study Abroad
Hashtags: #CSU_Alumni_Challenge #Culture #Europe #german #Germany #International #InternationalBusiness #InternationalEducation #Spain #Spanish #StudyAbroad #Travel
From 2004-2008, I studied international business (IB) at San Diego State University. Choosing that major impacted my life in a way I would have never imagined. As a freshman, I actually started out as a Business major with the intention of minoring in Spanish. During my freshman year, a fellow member of my professional co-ed business fraternity, Alpha Kappa Psi, told me about the IB major. I was so excited to learn that this major required a foreign language component, study abroad and an international internship! As soon as I was able, I switched my major to International Business with emphasis in Spanish and a minor in German.
Because of the IB major, I was able to spend a year studying abroad in A Coruña, Spain through a university to university exchange agreement. Because this coastal town is not a popular tourist or study abroad destination, I was fully immersed in the Spanish language. While it was definitely a challenge, it forced me to learn Spanish quickly. I absolutely fell in love with this city and was surprised that I was only one of three US students in the whole city.
To fulfill my international internship and German minor requirements, I left for the summer to complete an internship in Munich, Germany. I was truly in love with traveling, learning other languages and cultures. During the year I spent between Spain and Germany, I grew exponentially. I became fluent in Spanish and proficient in German. Additionally, I made friends from around the world who I am still in contact with today.
The biggest way that my experience at SDSU, and abroad, had on my life was the inspiration to start a study abroad company. After realizing how profoundly these international experiences enhanced my life, I wanted to facilitate similar opportunities for other students. In 2013, I launched Linguistic Horizons. Linguistic Horizons is a study abroad and international internship provider. We now send students to both South America and Europe with plans to expand. I am forever grateful to the SDSU International Business Department for their role in helping me find my passion in life. Helping others develop a love for travel, language learning and other cultures has proven to be a fulfilling life for me.