My name is Jackie Nevarez and I am a 4th-year undergraduate psychology student at the University of California Riverside (UCR). This past spring, I decided to apply to the European Transformations, Madrid & Rome study abroad program. To my great surprise, I was accepted into this program. I will be studying abroad Spring Quarter, which is from late March until mid-June. During my time abroad, I will be spending 5 weeks in Spain and another 5 weeks in Italy.
I always had dreams about traveling and exploring another country and this past spring, I finally had the courage to make my dreams a reality, but as we all know, dreams do not come cheap. I will be graduating June 2018 and I wanted to have one last adventure before graduating. While attending UCR, I had the opportunity to take a wide range of classes that have contributed greatly to my education and personal growth. Some of these classes were quite challenging, but it did not stop me from getting outstanding grades. As a result of my good grades, I receive a decent amount of financial aid from the federal government, but my financial aid does not cover all of my study abroad expenses and my family is unable to financially support me. I am currently in the process of applying for scholarships.
My entire life I have had financial struggles but I am fortunate enough to say that I have always had a roof over my head and food on the table. Through the few job experiences I have had, I know the value of a single dollar and I know it is a struggle to earn money. I do not take money for granted, especially now that I am a college student, who gets little sleep and barely has time to eat because of the rigorous time schedule I have due to studying, writing papers, reading, and working. I know how to save and spend my money on important things. I do not want my parents to spend their entire life savings on my study abroad expenses, which is why I am asking for your help.
I am doing the most that I possibly can to support my study abroad expenses. I am a full-time student at UCR and work part time on-campus. I also currently started working at one of the research labs on campus which is called Life Events Lab, but this is not a paid job. If I could, I would be working up to three jobs to support my study abroad expenses, but I have a restricted time schedule. I am the youngest of my family and the first to attend a four-year university. My family is Mexican, and they raised me to be hard-worker and to be someone who never gives up. It was never expected of me to attend college but I knew what I was capable of which is why I did not sell myself short, so I reached for the stars and began applying to colleges and universities from all across California. I was accepted to multiple colleges and universities but I decided to attend UCR. Not a day goes by that I regret my decision.
Reasons why I want to study abroad: I hope to view my education differently after studying abroad. I hope to increase my own understanding of cultural values and biases. I know that living in a foreign country will be overwhelming at times, but I hope to achieve personal growth. I also hope to strengthen my adaptability because relocating to a new country can be daunting but I know this will help me adjust to new environments. Studying abroad will strengthen my independence and I hope to gain more problem-solving skills which are useful in any workforce. I want to increase my confidence level, networking skills, and communication skills, which will add to my employment skills. I do not have numerous professional work experience but I hope to learn about the art, cuisine, and history of Italy and Spain because it will help develop my understanding of others which is vital to working and succeeding in any career. I do not want to miss the opportunity to have an international experience because I do not want to someday regret not taking advantage of all the opportunities college has to offer and I want to better my career and personal growth.
Please share this with your friends and family! Any amount of support helps profusely!
THANK YOU ALL FOR YOUR GENEROUS SUPPORT! I WILL BE FOREVER GRATEFUL FOR YOUR SUPPORT!
If you want to learn more about the study abroad program I was accepted to, here is the link: http://eap.ucop.edu/guides/spain/1617/Pages/european_transformations_rome_madrid.aspx