01 Jun Why I Moved Abroad as an International Student – Absolute Program Coordinator
Hello everyone! This is Thao and I’m from Vietnam in Southeast Asia. We’re well-known for the war with the US and the French in the past, and most recently known for the beautiful landscapes and surely as one of the most attractive destinations in the world (no advertising intended :D).
I describe myself in 4 words: Thankful – Helpful – Active – Organized. I love traveling, cooking and taking care of myself!
After graduating in Vietnam from my bachelor’s degree in Hispanic language and culture, I realized that what I’m most passionate about is helping people. I used to work as a coordinator’s assistant at an educational organization in Vietnam, which supports Vietnamese students to achieve their purpose of studying abroad, especially in Spanish destinations. Having an adequately competent linguistic background, I was in charge of teaching Spanish at a basic level to those preparing to move and study in Spain. In addition, I was responsible for translating legal documents from Vietnamese to English/Spanish.
Moving Abroad to Spain
Thao and her friends visiting Peñiscola, Spain
I came to Spain back in 2017, when I decided that I had to improve my Spanish and gain more experience in the country that has been my desired destination for a looong time. I chose Valencia for my very first experience.
One year later, I had the great opportunity to start working for a Spanish import and export company, within the Asian division, where I learned many things about the different working cultures in Asia and the commercial world, and specially, it allowed me to travel a lot. However, I felt I didn’t belong there, so I left.
Later on, I moved to Castelló to study my first master’s degree in Intercultural Communication and Language Teaching at the University of Jaume I. This brought me a whole new world of knowledge about intercultural communication and teaching methods. After that, I decided to apply for another postgraduate degree called Teaching Spanish as a Second Language.
At this point you may be thinking… why so many studies related to languages? Well I’m always struck by all things related to culture or languages. For me, learning a new language is like entering a portal that takes me to a whole different universe. When I hear the very same word in Spanish and in English, I feel different, I understand it differently. Weird, right? Anyone with me here?
Becoming a Program Coordinator in Barcelona
Absolute internship also came to my life by pure chance. I actually planned to return to Vietnam this summer; but due to the worsening Covid situation over there, the country closed its border, effectively leaving me stranded in Spain. Then, out of the blue, a friend of mine told me about the wonderful opportunity to become a Program Coordinator for the Absolute Internship Program in Barcelona. WHY NOT!? 3 weeks later, I got accepted to be part of the team.
I’m ready to welcome all our students and make it a life-changing summer experience for every single program participant!
Thanks to my past experience as a foreign student living in Spain, I’ll be able to transfer all my advice and knowledge to our fellow students in Barcelona, as well as be a support onsite 24/7.