Alumni Spotlight: Daniella Schuh


Daniella Schuh is a 4th year student at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo majoring in Experience Industry Management and minoring in Spanish. She currently works as an Event Coordinator Intern at a non-profit in SLO and is a part of the Sigma Kappa sorority on campus. She enjoys hanging out with her friends and family doing activities such as hiking, watching the sunset, going to the beach, trying new foods and listening to music.

Why did you choose this program?

I chose CEA because they offered a great curriculum for me to complete my General Education courses and my Spanish minor abroad in Seville, Spain. Also, I loved the housing options, excursions, and fun activities included in the program.

What did your program provider assist you with, and what did you have to organize on your own?

Cal Poly Study Abroad provided me with information in choosing a specific program and showing me the next steps that followed with applying for a specific program.

I'm glad I chose CEA because they helped me out a lot with the pre-departure process such as getting a visa, packing list, safety training, etc. I barely had to organize anything on my own because CEA offered a ton of assistance and guidance throughout the whole process.

What is one piece of advice you'd give to someone going on your program?

Really try and make friends with locals because they will teach you a lot about their culture and language. It's important to be friendly and patient when traveling abroad because you will run into many situations where you need to make an effort to learn a new language/talk to stranger to get help in navigating around the city, finding a place to eat, needing advice for things to do, sights to see, etc.

What does an average day/week look like as a participant of this program?

My classes abroad were only Mondays - Thursdays and on some weekends I would travel to other countries/cities. During the week I would go to class, go shopping, sight-see, do homework at coffee shops, try new foods/beverages, etc.

I loved being able to walk everywhere in Seville. After class, my friend and I would wander through the little streets of Seville and find new shops, restaurants, parks, etc.

Going into your experience abroad, what was your biggest fear, and how did you overcome it? How did your views on the issue change?

My biggest fear abroad was being able to be on my own and independent in a different country. It helped that I spoke the Spanish language, however, it is really intimidating speaking to local Spaniards that are experts in the Spanish language.

The first two weeks I was very cautious while walking places and knew to download a map in order to find my way around. I overcame my fear by being confident in talking with Spaniards and walking every day in order to get myself familiarized with the city.

Is there anything you wish you would have done differently?

The only thing I would have different abroad is traveling more around Spain. I visited 10 countries while I was abroad and mostly traveled on the weekends. However, when I arrived to Seville in September, I should have traveled more in Spain in September and October since those months are great weather. I think it is important to get familiarized with Spanish culture all over so that you get the full experience.