An update from Emily Kordick, senior math education and Spanish double major.
I took Latin for three years in middle school and when I was signing up for my high school classes I decided I wanted to learn Spanish too. Unfortunately, I didn’t have enough room in my schedule so I chose to take Spanish in place of Latin and fell in love with the language! Because Spanish is a romance language and Latin is the base of those, picking up the vocabulary and conjugations came easily to me.
Being an Illinois State language student is great. The teachers are amazing. There are so many opportunities to practice my language and I feel like I can really challenge myself. I am involved in Sigma Delta Pi, the national Spanish Honor Society, where I attend bi-weekly conversation hours with local high school students, volunteer at elementary school events, and attend events such as Dia de Los Muertos at the Children’s Discovery Museum in uptown every fall.
My classes are interesting and since they have a smaller group of students, I feel like I get the personal attention I need. I love taking Spanish classes because it gives me the opportunity to practice all areas of Spanish: oral, listening, written, etc. My professors are always helpful and being in Spanish classes also gives me the opportunity to meet people outside of my mathematics major. Whenever I am in a Spanish class, I can always tell my Spanish gets better and it gives me more confidence in my speaking skills.
I studied abroad in Granada, Spain, during my sophomore year. I am forever grateful that my roommate pushed me to study abroad with her. I am such a home-body, but studying abroad was the best experience I have ever had. I loved living with my host family and taking classes with people from all over the world. Being able to travel to all the surrounding countries was amazing. I am still in shock over how insanely beautiful Europe is. My other favorite part was being able to practice my Spanish every day and learn so much from my professors, host family, and friends I met while I was there. Also, the stores in Granada have the cutest clothes (cue Zara & Stradivarius)!
After I graduate I want (actually need) to go back to Spain with my mom. After that, I am looking forward to teaching either math or Spanish at a high school in the northwest suburbs!