Juan Angel is a charismatic student at Zamorano, the agricultural university in Honduras. As you'd expect of someone who enjoys classes about science and production or bananas, Juan Angel isn't the type of person who likes to sit behind a desk all day. Instead, his hope is to return to Copán and enter the family's coffee, hotel, and tourism business.
Not to pun on agricultural terms, but Juan Angel has roots in Copán and at Mayatan. The school was much smaller when he attended, from pre-K through middle school. He reports having 9-10 classmates in a given year and close relationships with teachers. Juan Angel thinks that, as Mayatan has grown and taken on more staff, it has become more established, organized, and specialized, as one would expect.
Like several students we've talked to, Juan Angel particularly remembers Mr. Eric, who, although strict, was one of the best teachers he's ever had, even in college. "He would give us 20-40 questions a day that we had to answer for homework. This made us responsible for a lot of the learning in class."
Juan Angel drew on his Mayatan education during one of his favorite experiences: studying abroad for a year in St. Gallen, Switzerland. He learned German there, lived with a host family, and had an internship volunteering in a kindergarten, where he helped during English class and taught songs and games he learned at Mayatan, such as "Red Rover." He uses his English skills now to tutor classmates at Zamorano who are less advanced.
Juan Angel's short-term goal is to take advantage of his university's relationships with schools around the world to study abroad again, perhaps perfecting his German or enjoying another "European experience." Recently, however, he got a taste of what he wants to do for a career; Juan Angel worked with MC Tours to give a banana tour to a group from a Holland America cruise ship, and they all had a wonderful time.