Student Spotlight: Eva Kurilla

University senior talks about her World Language Department experience at Scranton and the enjoyment of foreign language conversations.
female student with blonde hair holding a coffee, siting on a bench, with green foliage behind her, bordered by lanvendare background
Eva Kurilla '23, discusses her experience with a foreign language as well as the process of learning a language here at the University.

Recent graduate Eva Kurilla '23, a biology major, with a minor in French, recently answered a series of questions regarding her experience with a foreign language as well as the process of learning a language here at the University.

Q. Were you exposed to another language during your childhood?

"I was never really around any other language but English until I was in seventh grade. That was when I started taking French courses."

Q. What guided your interest toward studying French? 

"While growing up, I always had the dream of traveling to France, and I thought that French was such a beautiful language. I decided to take French in seventh grade because I wanted to be able to go to France and communicate with the locals. After my first year of learning the language, I knew I wanted to stick with it throughout all of my education."

Q. How has knowing French helped you in your studies? Job? Personal life?

"Learning French has opened many doors of opportunities for me. During high school, I was given the opportunity to travel to France and stay with a French family for a month. I was able to see Alsace, Paris, and the South of France. I have also been blessed with a work study job as a French tutor at the Language Learning Center. Moreover, I have been able to cultivate worldly knowledge about cultures, history and traditions that I never knew about. Studying French has allowed me to meet so many wonderful people and helped open my eyes to different cultures around me."

Q. What career or job are you aiming for?

"I am currently on the pre-vet track and applying to veterinarian school this upcoming cycle. My goal is to become a small animal exotics vet (reptiles, small mammals, fish, and birds)."

Q. What has been your favorite French class? Why? 

"One of my favorite language classes here at The University of Scranton was French Conversation. I loved being able to discuss different topics and learn more about the students I have been in French with since I started courses here. I also really enjoyed the course that pertained to Francophone women authors. This course really heightened my reading ability and allowed me to understand more about different Francophone countries and their histories."

Q. What is the best thing about studying a language at the University?

"The best part about studying a language at The University of Scranton -- people in the department. The [ World ] Language Department is the most welcoming group of people, and every one of my classmates were so kind and helpful. The Language Learning Center also offers a variety of extra material that helped me expand my French outside of class as well. My teachers and all the other staff in the department have been so wonderful and helpful."

Q. What is one of your favorite memories from studying French at the University?  

"One of my favorite memories from my time as a French minor at The University of Scranton was reading the book "En Compagnie Des Hommes" ["In the Company of Men"] by Véronique Tadjo. I have always been very passionate about the environment, and this book really opened my eyes on issues relating the environment to mankind. Some of the chapters are written from the perspective of a Baobab tree, which lived through years of human destruction. This book was very moving and taught me more about the Ebola outbreak and how it relates to the annihilation of the environment."

Q. What advice do you have for students who are considering studying another language? 

"I would confidently tell every student considering languages to take the courses. Through taking a language at the University, a variety of opportunities are offered to you. There are multiple cultural events, Conversation Hours for different languages, job opportunities, and an array of other events."

Q. What do you enjoy doing in your free time?

"I enjoy being outside and hiking. I am a believer in getting at least 20 minutes of fresh air each day. I also really enjoy art and music."

Q. Where do you see yourself in ten years?

"In ten years, I see myself working at an exotics clinic and volunteering with large animal exotics, as well. I have always found veterinarian work at zoos to be extremely interesting. I would also like to spend my free time teaching kids about animal science and medicine, to spread the knowledge I have gained throughout studying biology and animal anatomy."

Q. Are you involved in clubs or sports?

"I am the vice president of Pre-vet club, a member of the Health Profession Organizations Club, a member of Alpha Mu Gamma Honors Society and a Royal Ambassador for Admissions."

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