By: Hunter Boschert
Iris Borras is a junior business administration major minoring in marketing communications, and she just started the Bellarmine’s dual credit master’s of business administration program. Before coming to the United States she lived her entire life in Barcelona, Spain.
Borras lived with her parents and younger brother about 10 minutes from the center of downtown Barcelona. After an opportunity to move to the United States on a tennis scholarship she became a student at St. Catherine College in Bardstown, Kentucky. Borras transferred to Bellarmine after the university closed almost two years ago.
Q: What are you involved in on campus?
A: I am involved with the International Club and Spanish Club.
Q: What is your favorite Bellarmine event?
A: Most definitely the homecoming dances. In Barcelona there were no proms or homecoming. There were no high school dances at all. This was my first time actually getting to go to a school dance, and it was just like in the movies.
Q: What do you miss most about home?
A: I, of course, miss my family and friends but I really miss my independence. I miss being able to go anywhere without the need of a car. Public transportation is so much easier to get around on in Barcelona, and it is almost impossible to get anywhere here without a car, which I do not have.
Q: What is your favorite U.S. city?
A: I really like New York, Chicago and San Francisco. Being from Barcelona, a huge city, it makes me feel at home. Louisville can feel small sometimes and make me miss home.
Q: Why did you choose to come to the United States?
A: I had visited the States before and really liked the culture. Also, I studied English my entire life and thought coming to the States would be a great opportunity.
Q: Is the U.S. what you expected it to be like?
A: I expected it to be what I saw when I came on vacation. Being a tourist it is different than living here. I thought the people were a lot nicer when I was visiting. I mean they are still nice but not as much as I thought they would be.
Q: What is the strangest social custom you have noticed?
A: People not really touching each other. In Spain it is a popular custom to double kiss when you meet someone or hug. Americans are a lot less touchy and enjoy their personal space.
Q: What is your favorite American food?
A: Biscuits and gravy. We do not get that in Spain. Also chicken pot pie and pulled pork.
Q: What food do you miss from home?
A: Everything! I like all types of food but my mom’s food and Mediterranean cuisine is just so different. Nothing at home is frozen or pre-cooked, whereas here in the States everything is pre-processed and then you take it home and finish cooking it. It does not seem like many meals are prepared from scratch here.
Q: Do you plan on staying in Louisville post graduation?
A: No I would like to stay in the United States for a couple of years but I do not want to live in Louisville. I want to go back home at some point so when my student visa runs out I will go back. If I stay in the States I would like to move to California or Florida because I speak Spanish and it is warmer.
Q: Was it a big change moving from St. Catherine to Bellarmine?
A: Yes. I thought St. Catherine was in the middle of nowhere. I planned on transferring anyway, so I am glad I got to transfer to Bellarmine. I did not feel challenged there and it was so much smaller. I also found out that I do not like living in Bardstown. The transition to Bellarmine wasn’t that hard either because all of my St. Catherine friends transferred to Bellarmine.