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Modern Languages and Literatures

Matthew Spehlmann ’16

My name is Matthew Spehlmann. My hometown, for the most part, is Lake Forest. I graduated in May 2016. I studied Economics, Spanish, and Computer Science. I like to think I also studied the English language, communication, and leadership through my work with the Writing Center.

Currently, I am interning with a nonprofit called The Tandana Foundation in Ecuador. My role with the Foundation is to coordinate group volunteer projects. Tandana is neat because its mission is to empower local communities and at the same time to foster a deeper sense of a global community. Local communities propose projects to Tandana specific to their needs and Tandana, if the projects are feasible, affords volunteers to the projects. I clicked with Tandana’s mission from the start. My past work and studies have pertained to fiscal localism.

I’d love to thank the faculty I got to know through my studies in the Spanish department. My Spanish professors I had imparted the friendliness and encouraging spirit that is so characteristic of Spanish-speaking people. I’d also like to thank the Spanish department for giving me the opportunity to study in Granada, Spain. The city is majestic; the people are the most vibrant I’ve met.

How did you choose your area of study?

Costa Rica is actually the reason I decided on a Spanish major. On a volunteer trip in Costa Rica I discovered a laid back way of life. I wanted to get a grasp of the language so that I could travel on my own in Central America. Four years later and I feel my grasp of Spanish and Central America is well fortified.

What did you think of the faculty?

Throughout my studies in the Spanish department, the professors I had imparted the friendliness and encouraging spirit that is so characteristic of Spanish speaking people. I’d also like to thank the Spanish department for giving me the opportunity to study in Granada, Spain. The city is majestic; the people are the most vibrant I’ve met.