Miranda is GLN’s Director of Member Engagement and part of our core leadership. See what she has to say about her involvement with GLN.
GLN attracted me originally because after living in Europe for three years and moving back to the U.S., I felt like an outsider in my own country. I missed the diversity of culture and experiences that I encountered on a daily basis abroad. GLN had the feeling of what I was missing: cultural curiosity and openness. At GLN, I met people with whom I had shared experiences – even if some of these experiences were drastically different on the surface level, they were strikingly similar in essence.
My decision to be a volunteer was two-fold. On the one hand, I wanted to be around people who had the same curiosity and (sometimes dorky) obsession with language and cultural sharing that I have, and volunteering here allows me to do so. On the other hand, I am relatively young in my career and am always looking to flex my professional muscles. In my role as a Director, I am exposed first-hand to organizational development and decision-making and I have the opportunity to lead my own projects and manage a team.
I’m currently studying Spanish, and one memory that always comes back to me is from my first-ever Spanish class that I took in Spain. The teacher had us all stand up and stick our tongues out and shake our heads, letting our tongues shake out of our mouths. He said that the first thing native English speakers must do is loosen our tongues and to not be embarrassed. Of course, at the time, we all thought our teacher was absolutely bonkers, but now when I speak Spanish, I am conscious of my tongue moving differently than when I speak English, and I’ve come to understand that little details like this can make a real difference in pronunciation.
I’m looking forward to continuing to be a part of GLN in 2015 and to (hopefully) achieving my goal of being a polyglot one day!