Greenheart Travel is excited to send a group of amazing high school students to language camps overseas as part of our 2016 Travel Correspondent Scholarship awards. To help introduce our inspiring writers, we will be doing a series of spotlight interviews to help you get to know a little more about who they are, where they will be headed and what inspired them to learn a new language abroad.
Read on to meet 15-year-old, Allie Larman, our Greenheart Travel Correspondent from Berkeley, California, who’ll be traveling to Salamanca for her summer language camp in Spain!
I really love to dance and do acrobatics. I am member of the dance team at my school, Albany Dance Company. We perform at school events, showcases, and we went to our first competition this year! I also participate in a program called Youth and Government which I love. I have the opportunity to travel, debate, and meet new friends from all over California.
As a child, I traveled abroad quite often. I visited Poland and England to visit family as well as Costa Rica! Unfortunately, I haven’t traveled abroad for quite sometime.
My older sister studied abroad in Spain as a teenager. She had a really incredible experience, and ever since she came back I have wanted to do the same. I live in an area with many Spanish speakers, and I really want to be able to communicate with them and other Spanish speakers. I think in many ways, a language has a unique culture intertwined with it, and learning a language is a really important way to learn about and experience different cultures.
I am really excited to try Spanish cuisine, as well as to watch (and maybe try!) Spanish dance styles, like the Flamenco. I am also really excited to live with a different family, because I will be able to see how other families live.
I feel it is really important to travel to a new place and learn a new language. Staying in one place can close one’s mind to the vastness and diversity of our world. Only experiencing one’s own culture and language oftentimes forces one to avoid anyone different from themselves. By learning a new language and traveling to other places, we experience diversity and culture, and we learn how to acknowledge similarities and cherish our differences.
I am nervous about making new friends while I am in Spain. I have gone to school with many of my classmates for over 10 years, so it will be a really cool, but a bit nerve-wracking experience, to make a new group of friends.
I just finished my fourth year of Spanish class at school. I know many grammar rules, and I can speak at a conversational level fairly well, but I often have difficulty incorporating more complex grammar concepts and tenses into my speaking.
I think I will become much more independent during my time abroad. Although I am staying with a host family, I will be largely self-sufficient. I think and hope this independence will improve my responsibility.
Allie Larman is 15 years old and lives in Berkeley, California. Her goal during his language program in Salamanca, Spain is “to learn and try Spanish dance styles such as Flamenco while I am in Salamanca. I practice American dance at home, and I hope to broaden my dance horizons.” Follow Allie’s adventures in Spain on her weekly blog post updates.