Reaping the rewards of Spanish studies at Universiti Malaya
By: Caning Jaramillo
We find ourselves at a moment of excitement within the Department of Asian and European Languages at the Faculty of Languages and Linguistics, Universiti Malaya (UM). It is a time to celebrate not only the accomplishments of our students but also the wide array of opportunities that Spanish Studies can offer to Malaysian learners.
Arianna Gan Sven Chia, a final-year Spanish student, has recently concluded an extraordinary 16-week paid industrial placement at The Arrecife Grand Hotel and Spa in Lanzarote, Canary Island, Spain. Her successful completion of this internship is a milestone that reflects not only Arianna’s dedication but also the commitment of our department to providing exceptional opportunities for our students. During her time in Spain, Arianna not only thrived in her professional endeavours but also embraced the chance to engage in outdoor activities, dive into new experiences like paragliding, and explore the local culture, even taking up Latin dance during her free time.
Following her intensive internship, Arianna embarked on a well-deserved holiday, discovering the charm of cities such as Barcelona, Bilbao, Madrid, Brussels, and Paris, among others. These experiences have added depth to her academic journey and enriched her cross-cultural perspectives.
The excitement surrounding Arianna’s achievement extends beyond her personal success. As the Coordinator responsible for the Spanish Industrial Practice, I am particularly enthusiastic about the increasing opportunities available to Malaysian students interested in European Studies, with a focus on Spanish. Our faculty’s collaboration with the Spanish Embassy in Kuala Lumpur has yielded scholarships for Malaysian students in our Spanish undergraduate programs, and there are promising developments in simplifying visa procedures for students seeking industrial placements in Spain after their studies.
However, our journey towards excellence does not end here. Our collaboration with Latin American embassies has also begun to bear fruit, opening new avenues for internships and industrial partnerships. In the near future, our graduates will have the exciting opportunity to intern with companies in Latin America, including the United States, a prospect that will undoubtedly broaden their horizons and enhance their career prospects.
Arianna Gan Sven Chia’s triumphant completion of her internship serves as a testament to the excellence of our Spanish Studies program and the dedication of our faculty. We take immense pride in equipping our students with the skills and knowledge needed to thrive in an interconnected world. Arianna’s success reflects the high standards and commitment we uphold within our department.
As we look ahead, our commitment remains strong in nurturing global citizens proficient in Spanish and enriched with cross-cultural competencies. We extend our appreciation to our esteemed partners, including the Embassy of Spain in Kuala Lumpur, for their strong support in creating invaluable prospects for our students.
If you are eager to learn more about the Spanish Studies program at UM or wish to explore the exciting opportunities it offers, please do not hesitate to get in touch with us. Our dedicated faculty members are ready to provide comprehensive information and guidance.
In conclusion, Arianna Gan Sven Chia’s achievement signifies not just a personal milestone but a significant advancement for the Spanish Studies program at UM. It opens doors for Malaysian students to pursue their aspirations in European and Latin American contexts.
As we continue to pave the way for success in Spanish Studies, we cordially invite all aspiring students to join us on this exhilarating journey of language and culture. Or as we say in Spanish:
The author is the Spanish language instructor at the Department of Asian and European Languages, Faculty of Languages and Linguistics, Universiti Malaya. He can be reached at [email protected]