Loving Language: The College Experience

Daniel Clark just finished his fourth year as a Portuguese and business student at UW-Madison. He’s always known that a global profile would be a fool-proof path.

“I think [language learning] has defined my college experience,” said Clark.

Clark is originally from Wausau, WI, but has had temporary homes in Minneapolis, MN, Quito, Ecuador, Coimbra, Portugal and, of course, Madison, Wisconsin.

Immediately following his high school graduation, Clark spent a year in Quito, Ecuador through the International Rotary Exchange program. There he learned how powerful language study could be. Following his year abroad in South America, Clark spent his freshman year at the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities studying business — and taking a Portuguese for Spanish Speakers class, similar to Portuguese 301 offered at Madison. His sophomore year he transferred to UW-Madison knowing that he wanted to continue Portuguese and further build his international profile.

“I really am passionate about languages and I love learning new languages, even though I am bad at it in a classroom setting.”

By the time he had received his Madison acceptance, Clark knew study abroad was also part of his future and found himself spending a semester during his sophomore year studying at the University of Coimbra in Portugal.

“People don’t have any regrets when it comes to [study abroad] and I think it’s mostly because it opens up your mind and opens up a new world for you.”

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