Student of the Month: Beatriz Oliveira Blackman Machado


Field of Study: Nutrition

U.S. Host Institution: Kent State University

Tell us about a role model in your life. How did they help you get to where you are today?

My parents are my support and role model for my life. Since the beginning of the process, they supported me and encouraged me to continue on the right track. My mom said: “take the TOEFL test; it is not going to hurt you, just take it.” I took it and when I began the process to for BSMP, I was accepted thanks to my mom’s advice.

When I was in doubt about whether or not I should accept the opportunity to study abroad, my parents said: ‘it is going to be tough but you can do it, and if you do not like it remember that you can always come back home.’ So, I accepted. I think parents play an important role in everybody’s life, because they are the ones you can always count on, the ones who will guide you to the path that is best for you.

My parents also taught me how to react when things do not go as expected. My dad would always tell me “it could be worse,” to take a breath, and to solve one problem at a time. My mom reminds me to never give up on my dreams and I take these lessons with me. Sometimes problems just appear unexpectedly, and I take a breath and focus on one at a time; when I really want something, I work hard in order to make it happen.

They showed me how to meet people with an open heart and mind, because those are the people who can teach you something in the future. Everybody has a unique story about their lives, you just have to be open to listen and learn from them. I am experiencing this lesson now in my journey here—I have met wonderful people, each one of them showing me that sometimes life can be hard, but you can overcome the obstacles: enjoy the little things that happen, a smile, the nature.

My parents helped me get to where I am today, and I know they will always be there for me. Even if we are 24 hours apart from each other, I know they are cheering for my success here in another country, with new friends in another culture. Moreover, I will always love them for that.