Featured Student Testimonials

Being an Italian major at Ithaca College made me feel a bit like an exotic bird, as much for our rarity among the sea of IC's more well-known majors as for the melody of the Italian language. After graduation, I took a long shot and applied for a Fulbright grant in Italy, and was thrilled when they accepted me. The biggest and most pleasant surprise came when I met my colleagues and found that though many of them had excelled at schools like Yale and Columbia, the education I received in the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures at Ithaca College was more than enough to put me on an equal footing with them. Working with Fulbright was a thrilling and gratifying experience for me, and it would not have been possible without the instruction and dedicated support I received from the talented faculty at Ithaca College.  Zachary Gidding, ‘10

As I am currently beginning my career as an optometrist, I look back fondly on my experiences as an undergraduate student at Ithaca College.   While my concentration was Chemistry/Pre-Professional, the classes I looked forward to most were always Latin@ Literature or Women in Contemporary Spanish Literature. These classes helped shape my cultural perspective, as open discussion was always a key element during lecture time. Today, I am thankful for the opportunities afforded to me by the department of Modern Languages and Literatures, including solid language development, study abroad and an appreciation for diverse literature. I use my Spanish language skills on a daily basis as I practice optometry. In addition, I participate in an annual service trip to Guanajuato, Mexico, where I am able to serve nearly 3,000 Mexican citizens in need of eye care each year.  KelLee Rich, '08

While studying Spanish at Ithaca College, I felt extremely immersed in the language, literature, politics and culture of the Spanish-speaking world. I performed with Muevete-the Latin dance group, and participated in a variety of plays. There was even a table in the dining hall where I would meet up with fellow classmates to speak Spanish. In and outside of class, we were encouraged to improve our speaking skills and to enhance our knowledge of what was going on in the Spanish-speaking community today. Two of my favorite courses were Experiencing Hispanic Literature and Censorship, Subversion, and Disappearance: Witnessing and Representing the Argentine "Dirty War."I really appreciated the flexibility of the major because it allowed me to experiment and take other classes in other disciplines. My linguistics professor told me that “We don’t know who we are until we have lived outside of our comfort zone, for example living within another culture.” I completely agree. For the past two years, I have been a language assistant in Madrid, Spain teaching grades first through sixth. Aside from teaching, I have had so many opportunities to travel, even to places I learned about in my Spanish classes. I have fallen in love in Spain, joined an awesome gospel choir and met so many people that I am honored to call my family. I have gained a new part of me-all in another language. I am grateful for the solid foundation that IC gave me. I owe my professors and the department so much for the beautiful experiences that I have had. I’ve grown so much these past two years, and I look forward to new growth as I return to Spain again for a third year. Leah Young, ’10