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Life After Florence, Italy

So I lived in Europe for a semester… now what?

"The beautiful thing about studying abroad is that the studying part has to stop at some point. But the abroad part never has to."-Danee Chavez

As this semester closes I have begun job-hunting for Spring/Summer. After updating my resume and cover-letter etc…I was already a bit more impressed with myself. I sent off my resume and letter to a few different companies in Colorado for Spring and for Summer—a few places in other cities. I haven’t even left Italy yet and am already getting an incredible response from employers. People are intrigued by this somewhat unconventional method of education. I’ve been able to express my strengths in communication even across language barriers. Already being a student abroad I am blessed with a competitive edge.

When researching potential interview questions (typical—“Describe a situation where you____blank____”) most of the scenarios I am able to articulate have come from these last four months abroad. For instance, “Describe a situation where you were resourceful” triggers the memory of how I made it home from London after having my credit card stolen and the train to the airport was canceled due to a mechanical error. That day I used my conversational skills to befriend people from Australia, Austria, Croatia, London, and Italy to find means to get a train ticket, a cab-ride, and a bus-ride to the airport all under the pressure of time to catch the flight.

The lessons we have all had abroad are countless. The breakdown of a few experiences I have gained here and can of course take with me:

Visited Gucci factory and learned the ins-and-outs of a luxury brand 

  Learned of ‘Slow Food’ concepts and gastronomy

Attended Milan Fashion Week 

  Photo Cred: Danee Chavez Florence,Italy

Double check, triple check, and then check once more that you are going the right way

Embrace being lost—you might just meet an amazing stranger

Fall Break. 11 days. 6 plane tickets. 5 cities. 4 countries. 1 backpack. 

Photo Cred: Danee Chavez Barcelona, Spain

Compromise means maturity. You don’t always get what you want.

See the world from other people's eyes. 

Photo Cred: Danee Chavez Madrid, Spain

Studying abroad is not the end. Living in Italy is not the only foreign address I will have. Finding a job after graduation is less scary now that I’ve seen there are so many opportunities Why limit my applications to The United States? I won’t allow a language to prohibit my interest in living and working somewhere. Perhaps I don’t know French or Spanish but it is easy to learn enough to get by. English is everywhere and for that we should all be grateful. There are so many industries that have an American background that have spread throughout the world which gives graduates broader vocation prospects. We just have to look for them.

Danee Chavez, a Marketing student at The University of Colorado at Denver studying in Florence, Italy

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