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Sophomore to Study Abroad in London After Realizing No Country Speaks Spanish at 140 Level


Photo by Luis Hernandez / CC BY 2.0

Rebecca Weinstein (E ‘21) was ready to take her talents to the south beaches of Andalucia, Spain. There was only one small hitch in her plans — she can’t speak Spanish for shit.

She had spent the last two months researching Spanish-speaking countries in hopes of finding one where residents only spoke in simple, indicative sentences. “Preferably, I find a country where they only use the preterit,” she told UTB. “None of that imperfecto crap.”

Weinstein imagined a country where complex ideas and emotions could not be expressed and vocabulary only had to be memorized once a month before completely forgetting it again with no consequences. Sadly, no such country exists.

“I really just think it’s bullshit that I’ve spent four semesters at Penn learning Spanish and they still haven’t prepared me for my vacation — I mean study abroad — in Spain,” Weinstein said as she filled in random multiple choice answers 10 minutes before her Spanish class. After meeting with the head of the Spanish department, it was determined she was not prepared for a full immersion program and should consider English-speaking countries.

So instead of sipping margaritas and eating tapas, the engineering student will spend her study abroad actually learning things at University College London in a language she also barely understands, English.