Electrical engineering major Raquel Prado Framinan is from Sevilla, Spain, and shares her personal experience as a third-year international student at Point Loma Nazarene University in this exclusive interview.
The Point: Were you able to choose which university you were going to? If so, why did you choose Point Loma?
Prado Framinan: I got to choose Point Loma! I was looking for a university that allowed me to play golf at the same time I could study my major. Point Loma had a great location to play golf, and when I saw the girls on the roster and after talking with the coach I felt that I could definitely fit there. Apart from golf, I did my research on the majors they could offer me (some universities are only for business) and the ideas/beliefs that they shared (I never heard about Nazarenes before coming here). So far the experience has been very good. I feel integrated not only in the golf team but also in all my classes. The education is good, the golf is great and the location of the campus is amazing.
The Point: Did you feel any culture shock when you arrived in California? If so, are you still experiencing it now?
Prado Framinan: I came here when COVID-19 hit so my first experience was a little bit different from other internationals. I came for the mini-term on Jan. 25, 2021. My first cultural shock was the times; I never had dinner before 8:30 p.m. for example. The food is completely different, and here, you use a car to go everywhere. Apart from the structure of the cities, after two years and a half now, I keep encountering differences in culture: the way we eat, how we dress, the way we hang out and the different styles of music we listen to.
The Point: What are your thoughts on the education here and the classes you are taking? Are you enjoying them?
Prado Framinan: I really enjoy my classes. The education is different in Spain, but I really like it here, because it allows me to practice my sport and hang out with my friends.
The Point: How do you like your professors?
Prado Framinan: I think my professors are great, smart professionals who I can easily talk to.
The Point: What are the main similarities and differences between the schools in America and the schools in your country?
Prado Framinan: For my major, the main difference is that in Spain we study more theory and we need to study a lot of background classes that are not directly related to our major but are still science (chemistry, biology, technical design). Universities in Spain don’t have GEs, we just study what is required for our major (all the GEs are taken in high school instead). In Spain there are no athletics, so no teams. This is because the majors are so time-consuming that there is no time to spend on sports. Classes in Spain last about 2 hours instead of the 1 hour or so we have here in the U.S.
The Point: What is your favorite thing about Point Loma, and what is your least favorite?
Prado Framinan: I really enjoy the people. I wish it was more accessible to go off campus without the need of a car.
Written By: Shelby York