International Studies and Political Science with Alejandra G-L. | Hope College

My name Alejandra Gomez-Limon. A little bit about myself is that I am originally from Mexico City and then
moved to England for four years and then finally came to the US for my time in
high school. I was actually looking for schools with
some type of International Studies major and the reason why that is is because I
knew I wanted to pair that up with something else so that would give me a
broader, more applicable part into whatever else I wanted to do which
ended up being political science. I think altogether it made me see what the
value is of understanding all those different cultures through not just
simply like the international relations piece of it here but also understanding
the human aspect through religion classes so that you can relate to other
people better. So I took two study abroad semesters when
domestic and one actual abroad. Abroad experience was in Freiburg Germany.
I took the European Union program with IES and basically we’re stationed in
Freiburg and then from there depending on our classes would go to different
countries and have interviews and then just go see historical sites that are
important to what we’re learning about. So I was able to travel to nine countries
with the program and then additionally do some fun traveling on my own. My
second one was I went on a more so domestic program from Hope in DC. It was
the political science honors semester, and there I was able to work with an
organization that helped with detained immigrants so that is almost a lot of
international work when it came to communicating with different clients and
their families. Overall the experience was amazing and they also got to meet
some very cool people including the staff in the Kenyan embassy. So I had three main internships
throughout my time at Hope. The first one that worked at the Consulate of Mexico
in Detroit and I was focusing more. So in the political cultural department and
worked a lot with licenses for immigrants from Mexico or other Latin
American immigrants. After that I interned for Congressman
Huizenga which I asked for a focus on immigration really and through that
I was I worked a lot with Cuban immigrants and then finally was the DC
experience which was with CAIR Coalition. Capital Area Immigrants’ Rights Coalition and we basically worked as a little nonprofit law firm. We worked with
detained immigrants and we took some clients in-house and others we matched
with pro bono lawyers, and through them all I’ve always been able to weave in my
understanding of different political backgrounds, different cultural
backgrounds, religious backgrounds and it sounds a little bit repetitive but it’s
completely different having an academic background to what people are talking
about, what people are living through in order to be successful in whatever it is
that internship is asking of you. I think the first thing I would say is
if you want if you have at all an interest to work abroad, in any shape or
form, this would be a major worth having just so that you make those transitions
easier for yourself as well as understanding all of those different
peoples and people you’re gonna interact with a lot better. And then the second
thing would be that the major is so easy to pair up with something else and
give it the focus that you want, whether that be through languages I’ve mentioned
before or anything else that is going to make it a worthwhile major to have in
order to just be a global citizen that I think is so valuable as well as kind of
necessary at this point given the world we live in. Then after that, create a
great four year plan to plan out exactly where you want to go for your study
abroad how you want to make it work with the classes, general education credits,
and all that. If you do it strategically enough so that way it would just be a
breeze through the four year plan.

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