CAPA Study Abroad Alum Interview: Daniel Rodriguez

Feb 16, 2015 8:26:00 AM / by Stephanie Sadler

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A student at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, Daniuel studied abroad in London with CAPA International Education during Spring 2014. While abroad, he completed an internship with the national newspaper The Independent. Below, he talks about how his internship experience has influenced his career path, the exciting news of his upcoming internship in NYC and his recent trip to CAPA's latest study abroad city, Shanghai.
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CAPA WORLD: Tell us a bit about yourself.
DANIEL RODRIGUEZ: I’m a current senior and journalism major at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. I studied abroad with CAPA London during the spring of 2014. I enjoy reading, running and my all-time favorite hobby is to travel.
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CW: How has your career developed since you returned to the States? 
DR: After I returned from London, I worked as a summer intern for NBCUniversal in Los Angeles. I assisted the tech and social media news reporter for KNBC-TV, covering various stories in Southern California. This spring, I will spend my last semester interning for NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams in New York City.
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CW: Tell us a bit about your internship that you completed while studying abroad, your duties and accomplishments.
DR: While I was abroad, I interned for The Independent, one of the national British newspapers. I worked predominately with the paper’s digital team, creating infographics for The Independent’s website. I later began helping the foreign editor write daily international news briefs on stories occurring outside the United Kingdom.
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CW: Did your experience abroad in any way shape your career goals and aspirations? If so, how so? 
DR: My experience abroad gave me a better perspective of current events taking place outside of the United States. Interning in an international newsroom has inspired me to someday return to London and work as a producer covering foreign news and the European Union.
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CW: Beyond the wanderlust, what transferrable skills did you take away from your time abroad that will help you in your future career?
DR: My time at The Independent allowed me to obtain experience working with online news content.  Although my goal is to work in television news production, the skills I learned in London are transferrable because both TV stations and newspapers post their stories to the web. I am now confident producing content online to help readers visualize stories.
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CW: When you are in an interview, how do you talk about your study abroad experience?
DR: I have mentioned my experience in London in almost all of my recent interviews. I articulate the fact that I interned abroad and worked in an international newsroom. Job recruiters, no matter what the field, find experience working overseas extremely valuable as it shows you are able to leave your comfort zone and work in a foreign country. Most students only work domestically, so having completed an internship internationally puts you ahead of the competition.
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CW: Having been in London as a journalism student, was there a news story that happened in your host city while you were abroad that left an impact on you? If so, how so?
DR: While I was in London, the legalization of same-sex marriage took place in England and Scotland. I attended the largest celebration at a dance venue near Trafalgar Square and witnessed several couples become engaged at the stroke of midnight. This was a huge step for civil rights in the U.K., and seeing tears from individuals who could now marry their partners left a lasting impact on me.
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CW: Did your Latino background in any way effect your experience abroad? Was it important to you to seek out the Latino community in London?
DR: When I traveled to London, my goal was to completely immerse myself in the culture. Being from Southern California where there is a large Latino population, I didn't think Latinos were as prevalent in London as in Los Angeles. That doesn't go to say, however, that London isn't diverse. It's one of the most diverse cities in the world. There is a large South Asian and Indian population, especially in East London. I really had never tried Indian food before I studied abroad, but I fell in love with Brick Lane and all of its wonderful food options. London's Chinatown is also great and has some of the best Chinese food. The large amount of diversity in London made my study abroad experience much more interesting, and according to the BBC and the Guardian, the Latino population in the U.K. is actually growing!
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CW: What changes have you seen in yourself since you began your study abroad program? What has your experience taught you about yourself and the world around you?
DR: Studying and interning abroad was the best decision I ever made. Not only did I obtain valuable experience, but I learned that there is an entire world of people with a variety of lifestyles, experiences and stories to be told. Traveling is one of the greatest teachers as it allows you to learn about different ways of life firsthand. Before I studied abroad, I had no real desire to travel internationally. Now I want to visit as many countries as possible and just returned from a trip to China, where I visited Shanghai and Beijing. My experience in London kindled a desire to one day return to this amazing city and to tell the stories of individuals living around the globe.
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CW: You recently returned from a trip to China where you visited Shanghai – CAPA’s newest study abroad city! If you were able to study abroad again, would you consider Shanghai?
DR: Shanghai is one of the best cities I have ever visited. The public transportation is unmatched for the size of the city, and Shanghai is becoming more and more of a global player each year. It has amazing opportunities for business (it is the main business hub of China) and fashion, so students interested in these fields will benefit greatly by interning and studying abroad here with CAPA!

Thanks Daniel!

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Topics: London, England, CAPA Alumni