I like to say that I'm Texas by birth, yet a California girl, and, therefore, American. Irish by passport acquisition; and, some Latin nationality in a previous life. I was born in Corpus Christi, Texas at the end of my father's stint in the navy as a pilot. Then, we moved to California where I lived most of my childhood and adolescence. I ended up going to University of California at Berkeley because the University of Santa Clara was too close to home and the value for money of an education at Berkeley seemed to be incredible (and, definitely was!) Even so, my father couldn't believe that "a daughter of his would attend 'that' school!" In the end, it was fine. In fact, it was great! After being raised in a city and attending school in a fairly "vanilla" environment, I was thrilled to be in the excitement of a multi-cultural, multi-lingual center of educational excellence.
During my 3rd year at Berkeley, I took advantage of the EAP (Education Abroad Program) and spent one year studying at La Complutense in Madrid, Spain. It was my first experience in Europe and, for many years, was classified as "the best year of my life." Once the year ended, I didn't want to come back home.
But, since graduation was dependent on it, I returned. While I had originally only planned to major in Political Science, the year in Spain had given me a large amount of credits in Spanish, so I decided to spend one more semester in school to take two additional classes and double major in Poli Sci and Spanish Literature. During the summer between that last "official" semester and the additional one, I took a job with a computer manufacturer in the South Bay Area (Fremont) in a management training program. Originally, I wanted to go back to live and work in Europe, but that proved difficult to achieve.
So, I worked 4 1/2 years and learned a broad array of skills in all areas of the business and, simultaneously, still pursued my goal of returning to live and work in Europe. At year 3 or 4, I decided I needed to change my approach. So, I applied for Business Schools in Europe and started to get acceptances. Finally, my #1 choice school (IMD, in Lausanne, Switzerland) accepted me and in November 1992, I moved to Switzerland to study or a 1-year, intensive MBA degree.
This was the year that outplaced Madrid as the "best year of my life"! With 80 classmates from 40+ different countries speaking a total of 30 different languages, living on the edge of beautiful Lake Geneva....even 16 hour days studying, 6-days a week were bearable...actually, in retrospect, really enjoyable!
Now I live and work in Belgium (yet another multi-cultural, multi-lingual country! see the pattern, yet?).....to be continued!
I like to say that I'm Texas by birth, yet a California girl, and, therefore, American. Irish by passport acquisition; and, some Latin nationality in a previous life. I was born in Corpus Christi, Texas at the end of my father's stint in the...
English, Spanish, French, German