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Global Storyteller: Maria Tudela

Maria Asuncion Tudela is a graduate student majoring in liberal studies.

Have you traveled in your life?

Yes, I have been to Spain and Portugal.

What has been the best part of your international experience?

The best part was getting to see my family in Spain. My best memories are interacting with my relatives and eating Spanish food from Spain; it was very different.

How has traveling abroad changed you?

I was very privileged. Traveling is not cheap and it’s not easy. Growing up my mom would take us back to Spain as much as she could. There I get a different perspective. In the U.S. I’m considered a minority, but when I go to Spain, I’m a part of a whole different demographic. Now my personal world has no limits to how I can grow. I view politics differently, and it’s made me appreciate how my parents decided to raise my siblings and me.

What would you tell people planning to travel abroad?

It doesn’t matter how much you prepare, because it’s all new and as much as you plan for it, you can’t prepare yourself for it enough. It’s scary and fun being in a place different than where you’re from.

What are you most proud of today?

I have been working really hard to be and stay here to graduate from NC State; my next goal is a Ph.D. program.