Our student José Julián Villaseñor, Industrial Engineering Administrator, shares with us the international experience he lived during his stay at the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil.

When you entered Uni did you know there were international programs?

I entered the University of Celaya because of the career in which I am developing, in addition to the reputation that the university has, but I was not so aware of the academic mobility plans abroad that they have.

When you entered your career, did you think you would go to live and study abroad?

No, because before my plans were to finish my degree and get a job in a company, and thanks to the language program that the university has and my exchange in Brazil, I am broadening my professional horizons, and improving the way I communicate with people even if it is in another language.

Have you ever lived or studied outside of Mexico before?

 No, this is my first time living and studying abroad, but I will try hard not to make it the only time.

What prompted or motivated you to study in another country?

 To get out of my zone of conformity and experience the expectations and way of living within the customs and cultures of another country, and to strengthen different aspects of my professional and personal life, as well as my skills.

Why did you decide to study in that country?

Because the Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio Grande do Sul has very good engineering curricula to offer to the student community, and also as a recommendation of the University of Celaya for my curriculum.

How did you feel when you arrived in the new country?

At first I felt very excited and proud of myself, my family and my career, for having managed to get to the place where I am and that my way of doing things resulted in the achievement of being part of this exchange, from then on, most of the time I was always positive and cheerful for the upcoming situations in Brazil.

How have you been received at the university where you arrived?

From the moment we arrived for the first time, the university has always been in constant communication with all the intercampers, from the meetings to inform the school aspects, as well as to give us a warm welcome to all of us and their help for the situations that have arisen during our stay, in a very friendly manner and always with the doors open for any questions or problems we might have.

What will you miss most about Mexico and UNI?

 What I miss most about Mexico is living with my family and friends, and the gastronomic diversity that we Mexicans have. What I miss most about La UNI is the kind of coexistence and the university atmosphere that usually exists, and it has a lot to do with some difficulties that I occasionally have when communicating and the lack of university atmosphere that I have had during my stay at PUCRS.

What is the most exciting thing you have experienced so far in this experience?

Due to the exchange date, we were able to be present at the Carnival in Brazil, which is supposed to be one of the biggest in the world and we enjoyed it so much that we made a second trip to Florianopolis where we were able to appreciate even more the nature that this beautiful island has to offer.

And the hardest part?

 Seeing the causes that we have in Brazil thanks to the quarantine, since I saw how some people lost their jobs and wondered what they were going to do until the quarantine ended, many more unemployed people looking for decent work in the streets, and in a way that has affected us all, the good thing was that I am accompanied by friends who make the weight of the quarantine lighter.

What do you expect as a person and as a professional from this experience?

  As a person I hope to be able to take the experiences I have had while I have been fending for myself in a new environment for me, in order to prepare myself better in the future; as a professional I want to continue preparing myself to continue having a career as I have had so far and thanks to the new perspectives I am acquiring, I can know better important points in which I believe I can be efficient for my career and for my community.

Do you recommend these opportunities provided by Uni to your colleagues?

Of course I recommend them to my colleagues, as these kinds of opportunities make you have the kind of life-changing discoveries, and it's also very likely to improve your perception in terms of thinking, what would things be like if...?

And that for me is what I'm thankful to have gotten this opportunity.