Andréa Ball, B.S. 2020

Ph.D. Graduate Student, University of California-Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA

2020 Major: Biology and Spanish

How has being a graduate from Duke's Romance Studies Department helped shape you personally and/or professionally?

"I believe studying a language in college both humbled me and gave me the confidence to explore and try new things. I learned how to admit I did not know everything and be comfortable making mistakes in front of my peers. Overtime, my mistakes became less frequent and my confidence grew.

"Now I am pursuing a Ph.D. in pharmacology, and my days are focused on science. I no longer have as many opportunities to explore art and literature in a different language. Thus, I am thankful that while at Duke I prioritized taking classes in the Romance Studies where I could not only study a language but learn how to analyze art, film and literature. My time in the Romance Studies helped me to think and write creatively which is necessary for my career in science."

What advice would you give students in Duke's Romance Studies programs?

"I was also a Biology major so each semester half of my classes were science classes and the other half were Spanish classes through the Romance Studies Department. I am thankful for the balance that provided because at the end of each semester my exams were a mix of essays and problem set based exams."

Andréa Ball