Hispanic Studies’ Student Focus for September 2020 is Ms. Sara Thornton (’21).
Beginning her college career with a major in Biology and a minor in Studio Art, Sara quickly realized her passion for Spanish and teaching, making the switch to a primary course of study in Spanish / Foreign Language Education and secondary concentrations in Linguistics and Biology during her Sophomore year.
“I have always had a love for teaching, education, and other cultures,” notes Sara—something which becomes obvious when one considers the sorts of activities in which she has involved herself during the past few years, which include the founding of a non-profit organization dedicated to improving educational access for youth in Uganda; her participation as a volunteer in the CofC-led MedLife Peru program, in which she lent her Spanish skills as an interpreter for a mobile clinic; and her work as a tutor and Spanish instructor at the Low Country Language Academy, among other places.
A member of the Kappa Delta Pi Honor Society in Education and a Global Scholar to boot, Ms. Thornton has clearly distinguished herself while at the College of Charleston. For this reason—and many others—Hispanic Studies is proud to number her among its students.
In her own words:
The Hispanic Studies experience that I have had has been amazing to say the least. I find myself learning something incredible each day with the departments’ exceptional professors and courses. I learn so much from them inside the classroom and outside during office hours or helpful emails.
While studying at CofC some wonderful professors in the Spanish Department introduced me to the field of Linguistics. I found that this understanding and study of language is what connects people together. Language and culture go hand in hand. Language is the communication that allows a culture to thrive. Education of these subjects is what makes the breathtaking step of uniting our world, making it smaller and more accessible to all.
I would not be on the track I am today without their support, passion, guidance, and dedication. This spring after graduating, I will take a year to teach in Spain and then become a high school Spanish teacher with the skills, passion, and knowledge I gained from this department.
I am so grateful to have had this opportunity to grow not only in my knowledge of the Spanish language and culture, but also as an educator with the tools to share everything I have learned.