Natalia A. Duran

Natalia A. Duran

Graduating_Senior_19_Natalia

Photo by Maddy Bunnenberg-Ross

Hometown

Montclair, CA

 

Major

Environmental Analysis & Chicanx/Latinx Studies

 

Why did you chose Pitzer?

I chose Pitzer because of the amazing Environmental Analysis Program, and all the friends that I had made when I came on Bright Prospect’s Pitzer Preview Day.

 

What is your favorite memory at Pitzer?

My favorite memory from my time at Pitzer was when I swam alongside jellyfish and barracudas on Pitzer’s Costa Rica Study Abroad Program.

 

What is one of the most important lessons you’ve learned while at Pitzer?

One of the most important lessons I’ve learned has been about the importance of intercultural understanding in and outside of the classroom.

 

What are your post-Pitzer plans?

I plan to work for a year as I apply to grad schools for my masters in Ecology or Environmental Studies. I am also waiting to hear back from applications that I submitted to do research at the Red Sea Institute in Saudi Arabia.

 

What do you think makes Pitzer special?

Pitzer is special because of its students. We all come from such diverse backgrounds, and together we make Pitzer the amazing community and college that it is.

 

What is your favorite place on campus? Why?

My favorite place on campus is the Pit Stop! They have such great smoothies, and the staff are always so welcoming!

 

Do you have any words of advice for current/admitted students?

Go to as many events as possible! Claremont students and professors bring some of the most well-known organizers, authors, and speakers to the 5Cs, so make an effort to attend as many events as possible.

 

What else would you like to share about your experience at Pitzer?

Studying abroad was by far the best decision I ever made. As a low-income Latinx student I had originally thought that studying abroad wasn’t even an option for me. After learning that financial aid travels with you, I immediately signed up for the Costa Rica program! Take advantage of everything Pitzer has to offer, because there is so much available to you as a Pitzer student!

 

How has Pitzer challenged you and how has Pitzer helped you find success?

At the beginning of my first year, Pitzer challenged me academically and I found myself struggling to stay afloat in my classes. Eventually, with the help of understanding professors and helpful mentors, I was able to find my path and my grades improved significantly. I am now graduating with a GPA that I am proud of, especially since I worked so hard to get it.