Three years ago I left my family in Ecuador, in the Old World. I was travelling in the opposite direction of Christopher Columbus, but there would be no Indians to be found, “just” Spaniards.

Coming to such a small and family-like school in Santiago de Compostela, although a bit difficult at first, helped me change for the better. I grew more confident, especially when it came to speaking in English: given the international mix of students at Chester College, it was the only way my friends could understand me!

Chester College has a special multiculturalism, and a diverse environment, that has allowed for fresh mindsets and new ideas to flourish in me. I was able to spend so much time with my classmates, that they have become part of my family. But it wasn’t only my classmates that had a big influence on me. The passion that the teachers have, and their enthusiasm towards helping young people develop, brought an extra dimension to my thinking. The autonomy that was entrusted to me with regards to my study areas has also made me more academically independent and expanded my objectives. So much so that this year (2015) I took both the AP exams and the SAT, which I did not intend to take initially! I will miss Chester College, but I will always carry the school, the people and our shared experiences with me.

And so will we, Carla!

Carla Tamayo Guerrero (Ecuador) was a day High School student at Chester College International School from 2012 until June 2015 (Grades 10-12). In September 2015, Carla started her BA in Chemistry in San Francisco University in Quito.

The featured picture includes Carla Tamayo (left) and Elizaveta Kuzmecheva (right).

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