Returning to the Muhlenberg campus this semester I was uncertain
of how I would maintain my ties to the Spanish-speaking community
after my semester abroad in Ecuador. A friend told me about the
intercambio program set up through Dr. Sutherland's immigrant
support group. I jumped at this opportunity to be paired with
a native Spanish-speaker from the immigrant community and have
never looked back.
The first time I met Griselda was at her home in downtown Allentown.
As Griselda grew up in Ecuador, I was excited to share pictures
with her from my experience in Ecuador last fall. Since that day
we have met regularly a few times a week in the Trexler Library
on the Muhlenberg campus. Griselda brings vocabulary, grammar,
and translation questions in English and she adds life and meaning
to a novel in Spanish, which I read out loud to her.
Beyond this more formal part of our relationship, I enjoy conversing
with Griselda and learning to appreciate more and more the challenges
she faces on a daily basis living in a primarily English-speaking
part of the world. I believe that Griselda also enjoys the time
we spend together. She can take pride in her ability to help me
improve both my knowledge and my understanding of her native language.
Teresa Lunardi, '03