“At the time of applying for my Master’s degree, I was very interested in language acquisition. Two renowned professors in the field were at Western, Dr. Bruhn de Garavito and Dr. Perpiñán, and I thought this university would be a great opportunity.”
Supervisor: Dr. Silvia Perpiñán
Where did you complete your undergraduate degree?
I did my BA in English Philology at Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Spain. I completed my specialization in Linguistics at University of California, Los Angeles.
Describe your research in 100 words or less.
For my thesis I am currently working on bilingual language acquisition, specifically of Catalan and Spanish. I am investigating how a certain linguistic structure that exists in Catalan (but not in Spanish) is acquired by three different groups of children: Catalan dominant, Spanish dominant, and balanced bilinguals. At the same time, I am researching whether the divergent acquisition of this structure by the three groups may lead to language change.
What is it about your grad program that enables you to thrive and be successful?
One quality that I really love of Hispanic Studies is how multidisciplinary it is. Because of this, we can work on a wide range of topics and on projects that intersect with other fields, such as Psychology, Anthropology, or Computer Science. I think this is very beneficial for us as students because we are not becoming experts in just one very specific thing, but very competent in different areas.
What is your “dream” career?
An intellectually challenging career that would allow me to work on different things at the same time would be ideal.
What’s the best advice you could give to someone considering applying to your graduate program?
Some graduate students know what they want to work on starting on day one, which is great, but I would still encourage them to explore different areas of Linguistics.
What idea, suggestion, or comment would you like to share with the Western graduate community?
As an international student, one of the aspects I admire the most of the Western University (or perhaps Canadian) culture is how willing everyone is to help you out. My suggestion, then, is to ask for help/clarification/advice as often as it is necessary.
Where is “home” for you?
Barcelona, Spain, although I must admit that when I arrive to London after a trip, it does feel like home, too.
What one thing would you like people to know about you?
The more snow, the better; you won’t hear me complain in the winter.