Last semester I had the privilege of studying abroad with the UNC program in Sevilla, Spain
. As a student in Spain, many of my daily activities were similar to a typical UNC student in Chapel Hill: breakfast, classes, nap, exercise, homework, socialize. However, the differences outweighed these similarities, ten-fold. I lived in an apartment with a “Señora”, every weekend was spent traveling to a European city, biking was my most dependable form of transportation, and most importantly, I spoke Spanish for the majority of my day.
As I prepared to return to UNC this semester, my goal was to continue using Spanish. I have always heard the phrase, a language is like a muscle; if you do not use it, you lose it. I also had hopes of incorporating Spanish, my minor, with Business, my major. BUSI 499
: Mega Projects in Latin America, a course at Kenan-Flagler Business School
, has provided me this mix.
María Elena Rodriguez
, a staff member at the business school, teaches BUSI 499 and Working Language
courses. As a native speaker, she is knowledgeable about Latin American affairs and understands the critical need for business students to be able to communicate in Spanish. The class focuses on mega-projects that are developing the economies in Latin American. Just like many other business school classes, there is an emphasis on group projects and presentations; however, these are entirely in Spanish. Learning business vocabulary and presentation skills in Spanish has prepared us for being bilingual employees for a company in the future.
Kenan-Flagler does a wonderful job of offering elective classes based on the demand of the current students. BUSI 499 has allowed me to develop two personal interests in the same classroom, an opportunity I would not have found had I not been a student at Kenan-Flagler. I hope that I can continue to take courses that mold Spanish and Business into the same curriculum.