Inside CSUN: interview with former student Virgínia Alcoforado

We recently found on LinkedIn a very interesting post. The publication described the experience of our former student Virginia Alcoforado in her visit to Netflix in California.

Virginia participated in our Communication, Design & Innovation course, held at California State University, Northridge. We invite her to talk a little bit more about the course and her experience in California. Below you can see how this chat went.

How was your first day on the program?

My first day was unforgettable, a mix of feelings, but surely the feeling of belonging was the best one. Since my adolescence, I have had the dream of participating in an international educational experience and being able to reach this goal was amazing. Before the program started, I made some friendships on the WhatsApp group and, if I could sum up my first day in one word it would be: Excitement. I was excited to explore the campus, to personally meet the friends I had been talking to for months, to meet the other students and professors, I literally wanted to immerse myself in this experience.

Why did you choose to study at CSUN? What was your favorite thing at the university?

I confess that I did little research on CSUN at the beginning, I made my choice based on the course: Communication, Design & Innovation and I could not have made a better choice! I was lucky to take an incredible course in a structure that I had never seen before. The Campus is impressive, the library and the gym were the things that most shone my eyes for the immensity. But, I think my favorite place was Geronimo’s, an All-You-Can-Eat restaurant that was close to our accommodation. If someone who studied with me hears me say that, they will say I’m crazy, hahahah, but it became my favorite place for the fact that everybody used to gather together there. You could go alone to eat, but it would only take 5 minutes and your table was already full. I have good memories of conversations, laughter, and crazy mixes of food on one plate.

What course did you take? Why did you choose this course?

I chose to study Communication, Design & Innovation. I am graduated in Advertising and Administration, passionate about Marketing, so the course was the perfect choice for me. In terms of content, some things I had already studied, however, the richest point of the program and the content, in my opinion, was the contact with another market, the American market. It was super interesting to hear cases, methods, and reports from a different reality from the ones I experienced in Brazil.

Besides, I took the opportunity to take the extra Business English module too!

How were the professors and classes?

The professors were excellent, and they definitely take me out of my comfort zone. At first, it made me nervous, but then I thanked him for the learning. Prof. Keit (Communication & Innovation professor) was my favorite, he shared a lot of his market experience with us and also gave us space to share ours with the whole class. The exchange was incredible, both with teachers and students.

In the first week, they divided us into groups based on a questionnaire conducted before the course. I was super nervous because they put me in a group with 3 women very different from me, a Brazilian, a Lithuanian, and a Spanish. To my surprise, we managed to create an incredible product, which I am very proud of. This would certainly not be possible if I had been allocated to a group full of people just like me!

In addition to the course, you and your colleagues took the free days to visit some parts of California. What places did you like to visit the most?

California is incredible and I’m sure it can please everyone, from those who love excitement to those who enjoy calmness. I had the opportunity to visit incredible places, which makes it a little difficult to choose only a few, but three days are very remarkable for me! The first was when some friends and I went to Six Flags, the perfect program for those who love roller coasters. The second was the day we rented a car and gathered a bunch of people to do a mini-tour around Los Angeles, where the last stop was in Santa Monica to appreciate the sunset. Finally, of course, the day we went to Malibu!

Which companies did you and your class visit? How were the corporate visits?

We visited Netflix and Warner Bros. The visits were incredible, but my favorite was definitively Netflix. We had the opportunity to meet the team that manages the Latin American zone! It was a complete immersion in the universe that this entertainment giant created.

At the end of the experience, what marked you the most in your professional field? And what about your personal life, what did it change in you?

In the professional field, it was certainly the lessons learned from a different market than I was used to, as well as the teamwork exercises. In my personal life, for sure, what most affected me were the people! In addition to having the opportunity to meet a diversity of people from different parts of the world, I made lifelong friendships!

IBS Americas appreciates the statements and records, Virginia! May you be very successful in your professional life.

And if you want to have an unforgettable international experience at CSUN, click here and learn more about the university and the offered courses.