Elena Neuzil '17
Elena Neuzil '17 majored in Communication and Journalism and minored in Italian and Justice & Peace Studies. She studied abroad for a semester in Siena, Italy. After graduating, Elena sought an internship as a copy editor at the Star Tribune.
Elena started learning Italian on her own in high school, motivated primarily by her love of the language and a sense of personal fulfillment:
“I didn't learn Italian to robotically accomplish some sort of life goal. I studied it because it's beautiful and I love it, and I have found ways to incorporate it into my life through that appreciation. I was able to live with a host family in Siena that didn't speak much English, and make other friends with whom I mostly speak Italian. It's eye-opening to think that there are dear friends out in the world who I might not be able to even speak to had I not learned this language.”
Her advice for students starting out with Italian is the following: “Start speaking and listening immediately, and be hard on yourself with grammar and pronunciation. Forgive yourself for mistakes, and enjoy the journey.”