Luciana Vazquez is a senior at Franklin, double majoring in Social Justice and Sustainability and International Economics with Political Economy. She is originally from Paraguay, but throughout her childhood her father traveled extensively for work, moving the whole family first to Senegal and next to Mauritius. The international experience gave her a heart for traveling, meeting new people, learning and discovering different cultures and traditions. A postcard in her mailbox was her first introduction to Franklin, and though it seemed random, Luciana was intrigued to learn more. Her research convinced her that Franklin was the right university for her and the fact it was in Switzerland gave her parents a sense of security to let her daughter leave the nest on her own.

At Franklin, Luciana discovered that the small university environment allowed her to become more familiar and grow close relationships with classmates and professors. Plus, the international component was a key factor in student interaction and in making many new friends from countries from all over the world. Whether in class, in the cafeteria or other whereabouts of Franklin, the learning experience went beyond the classroom— being constantly exposed to different cultures, languages, traditions and backgrounds broadened her understanding of the world.

Luciana also credits Franklin for her self-discovery. Being all by herself for the first time was a big step but enabled Luciana to learn and understand more about herself while growing independently and maturely. Being away from family is never easy, but she soon grew to realize that she was more than ready to live on her own and had a strong and resilient personality. Luciana enjoys her studies immensely and she pictures her post-Master’s degree future either working for an international company or a nonprofit, designing and strategizing programs and projects for developing countries. Going internationally is her big dream, but she can’t deny that she greatly aspires to return to her roots in Paraguay to someday promote sustainable development there too.

Luciana is one of the three LLLS Program students assisting in the Taylor Institute goals of expansion, outreach and link building between Franklin’s undergraduate and graduate opportunities. Luciana was drawn to the Taylor Institute because she wanted to take on the challenge of promoting, planning and growing the events and initiatives related to the institute. She furthermore hopes to provide insight, visibility and work with a great variety of professionals from different disciplines to glean knowledge on a wider range of different fields.