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gabby santos on couch

Tiffin Tuesdays featuring Gabby Santos

This week’s #TiffinTuesdays, destination TU edition, we sat down with Gabby Santos who came to us from São Paulo, Brazil.

Where do you call home?
São Paulo, Brazil

How did you find Tiffin University?
I was doing things through an Agency that was helping me look into Universities in the U.S. and through playing volleyball I was able to get the TU Volleyball coach’s attention and came to TU for that!

What is the biggest difference from your lifestyle now compared to before you came to Tiffin?
Definitely the small town lifestyle. I’m from a city with about 12 million people and I was used to always being on the run and having 100 different things to do 24/7. It was definitely an adjustment for me. Learning that I really don’t need to be doing something different constantly was great. Now if you ask me if I ever want to live in a big city again I will probably tell you no right away. Tiffin definitely spoiled me. I saw that life in a small town can be so much more enjoyable thank in a big city.

What are some important aspects of American culture and society that you have learned to enjoy?
I would say the sense of responsibility. I think in the U.S. people are more responsible when it comes to daily tasks, work, money, everything. At home we are known for always being late, or finding a way to bend the rules, a way to make things easier for ourselves. And I think in the U.S. people see their responsibilities and are ready to tackle them constantly.

What main differences took you longer to adjust to or understand during your experience at Tiffin?
I think what took me longer to adjust is the lack of “relationships”. At home we value people, and personal experiences a lot, whereas here I felt like other duties such as work or money came before personal relationships. I had a hard time connecting to people in a more personal level because of this.

What would you like international students to know most importantly about coming to Tiffin University?
I would say that TU is the best place to get out of your comfort zone and really submerge in the American culture. People at TU are a family and really care for you. They will teach you all about their culture and are very understandable of yours as well, and I believe that is because of the vast exposure TU has to the international student population.

What has been your biggest achievement while you’ve been at Tiffin?
My biggest achievement was not only fighting for what I believed in through all 4 years, but being able to graduate Magna Cum Laude, with Academic Distinction, and earning an award of “Outstanding in the Field of Law Enforcement” which was what I majored in.