Alumni Spotlight: Jessica Francis

ISA students in Buenos Aires

Why did you decide to study abroad with ISA in Argentina?

Jessica: I chose ISA over other programs because they offer living with a host family instead of in student dorms. I really wanted to immerse myself in Argentine culture and be forced to speak Spanish. Once I was in Argentina I was very impressed with how ISA operates. The people that work in the Buenos Aires office are amazing people that helped me in so many ways. Every time I needed anything they were always there to help. They were very organized and always anticipated the students' needs.

What made studying in Argentina a unique and special experience?

Jessica: There was nothing that wasn't unique or special about my study abroad experience. I was in a different country doing different things every day, having a new experience every time I turned around. The one thing that made my study abroad experience so fantastic was the best friend that I made. I met a girl from a different state in the airport and we were placed in homestays blocks away from each other. We experienced Argentina together and are still best friends today, almost 2 years later. I experienced an amazing country and people and made a best friend for life.

How did this experience impact your academic development?

Jessica: My study abroad experience has had a great impact on my life since I returned from Argentina. Personally, I gained a best friend and some family across the world. Academically I was finally understanding the historical aspect of their culture, advancing my studies in my Spanish major. Professionally my study abroad experience is probably the reason why I have the job that I have today. I got a teaching job right out of college at a bilingual English-Spanish elementary school. I teach one subject in English and another in Spanish to a 90% Hispanic population. It is due to my experience in Argentina that I am able to better understand the culture and language of the students in my class.