Haverford – Interview with Rajat Aiyer
During spring break, students from Haverford in Philadephia, USA, took the leap across the pond to study abroad in Sevilla, Spain. Read the interview from Rajat Aiyer on his time in Spain with Centro MundoLengua.
1) Please share a little bit about yourself.
My name is Rajat Aiyer. I am 17 years old and I live in Philadelphia, USA. I enjoy playing videogames, running tracks, and playing water polo. I am a junior in the American school system, and, after graduating next year, I plan on going to Washington D.C to study politics and foreign affairs.
2) Was it your first travel alone outside of the United States?
This is not my first year leaving the United States. My parents try to set up trips around and outside the United States in every break that I have from school. I have been to many countries in Europe, North America, and Asia, and I have been to 4 continents. This, however, was my first trip to Sevilla. It was a great experience.
3) Where did you stay for the duration of your study abroad program in Sevilla?
During this trip, I stayed in a home-stay program. In a comfy, small apartment, I spent most of my time eating with the family and trying to speak and understand Spanish.
4) What was a normal day like as a high school student in Spain?
It was interesting to see the life of a high school student in another country. Spanish students spend much more time together and in the streets. It is much different in the United States. In the U.S, after school, a student would either play sports or go home to do homework.
Language exchange with Spanish students
5) Who was your Spanish teacher at Centro MundoLengua? How were the Spanish classes?
My Spanish teacher was Andrea. The classes at first were focused on learning subjunctive and preterite, which I thought was pretty boring, but we eventually just started speaking Spanish about any subject and started talking with people in the street. It became very interactive and fun.
6) How was your Spanish when you started the program versus when you left?
I will have to admit that my Spanish was not very good before I came into the program. I did know some poems and lines from Spanish stories, but not much after that. After the program, I think I can come up with sentences in Spanish much quicker.
Congratulations and keep practicing!
7) What is your most memorable experience from your time studying abroad in Sevilla?
My most memorable experience happened when I had free time in the city. A couple friends and I decided to take a stroll around the city and ended up staring at the Plaza de España. I haven´t seen anything like it before. We sat down and started playing cards, while still enjoying the great views. I was happy that I was able to do that with my friends.
8) How would you describe Spain in three words?
If I were to describe Spain in three words, I would say Spain is pretty dang cool! I am glad I was able to visit a city as awesome as Sevilla!
9) What advice would you give future MundoLengua students who will study abroad in Sevilla?
I would tell the future MundoLengua students to enjoy the free time that they have. Sevilla is such a beautiful city and the future students should spend the time appreciating the beauty that surrounds them. Visit the shops and talk to the people! I am sure you will enjoy it!
10) Would you go back to Sevilla if you have the chance? Why?
I would definitely come back to Sevilla if I had the chance. I would like to just hang around the city more now that I have seen the cathedral and museums. There is still so much more to see in Sevilla. There is much to do. If I could come back, I would spend more time in the streets interacting with people.