Meet Theresa

Where are you from?

I'm from Aracaju, Brazil.

How did you first hear about Taft?

Through a program that helps Brazilian students get to know opportunities abroad called Prep Change. 

What made you choose Taft?

Taft's academic program was certainly what first attracted my attention, but it was after looking into student life at Taft that I really made my decision. I appreciate how students at Taft are willing to engage in clubs and organizations that take them beyond what they're asked to do, and the friendliness and familiarity of this environment is something that I found to be unique to Taft.

What is it like to be an international student at Taft? 

Although I'm the only Brazilian at Taft, I feel included by my friends and teachers. In my daily life, I notice how belonging is deeply valued at Taft, and organizations like Somos Taft help me feel like I can relate to others' experiences even if we don't all come from the same background.

What activities do you participate in on campus?

I currently lead the Girl Up Club as well as the Interact Club. I am also co-head of the Model United Nations club. In addition, I am part of the Community Service Board and of the Debate Club, the Amnesty International club, Somos Taft, the Political Awareness club, and the Democrats Club. Lastly, as a part of my afternoon activities this season, I play Phaedra in the Taft Theater production A Midnight Summer's Dream and practice yoga. 

What has been your favorite class so far, and why?

Undoubtedly, AP European History has stood out to me as a very engaging course. Surrounded by such a passionate teacher and competitive peers, I don't think I have ever grown so much in a class in such a short period of time. Although it is a challenging course, I feel that the information we are learning will be useful in my future and to witness my own growth is very rewarding.

What is your favorite spot on campus?

The Faculty Room is where all of the clubs I lead started. I love its lighting, warmth, and familiar environment, which reminds me of each students' eagerness to contribute to the Taft community.

What has been your most memorable Taft moment so far?

Few times in my life I felt as well-received as I did when I represented Taft in the 2022 Yale Model United Nation's 3rd session in the Reardon room. It was a Saturday morning and the librarians who reserved the room for me were extremely supportive. Throughout the conference, my friends, teachers, and dorm parents encouraged me with a kindness that certainly helped to make that moment into one of the best MUN sessions I've ever had. The whole event was a rewarding experience, but that Saturday morning, in what I would argue is the room with the best view at Taft, felt just magical

What do you love most about Taft?

What I most love about Taft is the ability to respectfully disagree with others. As much as being around like-minded peers is comfortable, Taft gives me an every-day opportunity to challenge my own thoughts, as well as those of the people around me. Growing intellectually while with my friends, and being kind to each other even though we have different political, economic, or social views is very important to me, and Taft allows me to do that.

What does it mean to be a Rhino?

To me, being a Rhino means being able to persevere. Definitely, perseverance is needed by all to thrive in Taft’s a challenging and fulfilling environment for all those who want to learn and grow.