Department of Spanish and Portuguese

College of Letters & Science
HomeDavina D.

Davina D.

Major(s) and Certificate(s): 

International Studies, Certificate in Global Cultures

Graduation Year: 
2014
Current city: 
Chicago
Current state/province/country (if outside US): 
Illinois
What have you done since graduating from UW-Madison?: 

I briefly worked as a grant writer, I currently work as an Executive Assistant and Board Liaison to the President/CEO of a non-profit organization.

Language(s) : 
What motivated you to study this/these languages?: 

I wanted to be able to communicate with people from other countries and to fully immerse myself in a study abroad experience. I was motivated to communicate with other family members from different countries and be truly multi-cultural.

How have these languages enriched your life?: 

Most definitely, I think I am more creative and unique because I speak three languages. I appreciate different cultures fully and embrace different art, tastes, sounds and places.

What do you remember about your UW language classes? How were they different from other classes you took?: 

I enjoyed my Italian class particularly; I was motivated to eventually be able to study abroad in Italy. By working hard I knew that I could gain an invaluable tool, which is the ability to communicate with other people from different backgrounds.

How valuable were your out-of-classroom experiences?: 

Studying abroad was one of the most rewarding experiences of my life; I learned so much about myself, I saw the most beautiful places, ate the most incredible food, and felt a very liberating and sometimes unsettling feeling which helped me go outside of my comfort zone. I met great people who I will never forget, and some that I know I will remain friends with forever.

How have you maintained or improved your language(s) since graduation?: 

I am often required to speak and write Spanish at work, we service a predominantly Hispanic community. I sometimes speak Spanish and Italian with my mom. I write to family in Italy and Mexico now and then. I also watch foreign films somewhat often.

What advice do you have for current language students?: 

Practice speaking, reading, writing as often as possible. Do not be self-conscious when speaking; be open to being corrected in order to improve. Watch foreign films, listen to music, and read books in the language you are learning. STUDY ABROAD!!!!

What is your favorite word or phrase in a language you know?: 
"Incominciavo a volare nel cielo infinito," it's a lyric from one of my favorite songs, it means "I began to fly in an infinite sky."