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Studying International Business Gives Rusbi Andana Tools to Help Women in Guatemala

Rusbi Andana initially thought going to college would not be for her because of English being a second language for her. However, she came to realize that going to Alverno College is for her. Here is here story. “In the beginning I was thinking I don’t want to study anymore. I only have [gone to] high school in Guatemala and it was hard to think that at my age and I know that here in the United States that the age is not important, but for me it was because it would have to be in a second language and I thought I would not be able to go to the classes and be able to understand and that was one of my moments I was thinking no at my age it is not good because I knew a little English wasn’t enough to be in class,” she says.

“But then deciding to be in class it helped me because I have teachers who always are friendly in the way that they are always open and that helped me a lot and I feel free to ask questions if I don’t understand or I am able to go to them and say I don’t know what you are talking about and I want to understand so can you can talk slowly…that kind of thing because learning English at my age is not easy, but I am trying to do the best I can.”

As Rusbi mentioned, she is from Guatemala and it was her community along with receiving a scholarship that helped Rusbi go to college. “I came here in two-thousand and four and I am a school sister at Saint Francis and my community is part of this college and they are the ones that invited me to come and that was the reason I decided to stay at this college Alverno because of the offer I had and I am apart of this community that is the main thing that I have this opportunity.

This is Rusbi's first year. The thirty-three year old says the method in how she is able to learn and understand is different from back home and she definitely likes it much more. “Right now I am going for International Business and I am in the first year of being here and I really like the college because of the way they teach here is very different than Guatemala because in Guatemala you have grades and have to be able to pass the class and here we are developing different skills to be able to demonstrate that we are learning,” she says.

“I like it because here they call it assessment, but it is a good way of being able to learn and being able to demonstrate that we are learning in class and that we are learning for the society and not only for ourselves.”

Rusbi still has several more years before she finishes, however going back home to tell others how important education is to all people in her country especially women. “I’m thinking that when I finish I want to go back to Guatemala and work with the people because one thing I want to do is to help others understand that education is very important especially for women,” she says.

“A lot of people say ‘no’ women have to be married or go to college and I think even at my age or if somebody is married they can get their education. That is one of my things because women have the right to have education and I know because I am going for International Business,” she says. “I’m willing to have a different view about what it has been and then go back and help people in understanding that it can be good if they want and that is one of my goals in going back to help my sisters in Guatemala.”