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A young arriero leads a mule across fresh snow in the Peruvian Andes. Photo by Benjamin Swift (2016 Fall Semester Photo Contest Finalist), South America Semester.

Hey everyone!!

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¡Hola mis futuros amigos!

My name is Sophie and I’m from Madison, Wisconsin:) I am beyond excited to meet you all in T-12 days!!

First off, that’s me on the ground with my friend on my back in the photo, attempting to break-in my sweet new hiking boots. Don’t worry, it won’t be the last time you see those bad boys;)

To tell you a bit about myself, I love…

~my family, who I am super close to

~ice cream, specifically in waffle cones

~reading, usually mysteries and dramas, and I can’t wait to trade and chat about our different books this semester

~being active- long walks, hiking, rocking climbing water&snow skiing, tubing, some yoga, and sports, specifically soccer, ultimate frisbee, basketball and volleyball

~laughing, just in general

~theatre, both as an actress and audience member

~trivia nights @fun restaurants with friends

~perfect 83 degree days, ideally spent lounging on the lake (I HATE being cold, though I am most of the time)

~traveling and adventures, whether they be big or small

…just to name a few things!

I also discovered a passion for food and cooking in the past few months, so I am looking forward to savoring the Bolivian and Peruvian cuisine, and hopefully learning and assisting in some cocinas here and there!

I graduated from high school in May, 2018 and attended Boston College last year. Long story short, I did not adore my first year of college like I had envisioned I would. I did not find a best-friend-for-life in my roommate, a thrilling social life, classes I was passionate about, nor a ride-or-die sense of school spirit. It was a roller coaster of highs and lows— many of which were utterly normal college-freshman highs and lows; however, some others that were more extreme peaks and valleys… including the lowest of the valleys known as my dorm situation. Without going into painstaking detail, as I’m sure there will be plenty of time for that this semester;), there were parts of BC that I loved, however, there were also parts I felt very conflicted about. Thus, early in the second semester, I could see three possible paths for myself moving forward: return to Boston College in the fall, transfer to another school, or take some time off of school to clear my head, do something else, and figure out my next steps. So after lots of contemplation, conversations, emails, lists and tears throughout the second semester, I made the decision to not attend any college, BC or otherwise, in the fall of 2019. My parents and I came to the conclusion that I shouldn’t just return to BC because it was the “easy” and “expected” path, nor should I make a rash decision to immediately enroll in another college if I wasn’t sure where I wanted to go or what I wanted to do. It was a huge relief having made the decision to take an unconventional gap semester after my freshman year of college, so now here I am: hopefully ready to learn and experience everything in this Andes and Amazon Dragons semester.

Furthermore, I’ve taken Spanish classes for most of my life, except for my spring semester of college last year, so I have a classroom background (although it is a rather rusty at the moment), but I am preparing to be slapped in the face by real-life Spanish in the real-life world, in a place/country/continent I have never been.

See you all soon!!

Sophie