Pablo Cuesta, a Communications student, is the beneficiary of one of the scholarships offered to young Segovians by the Provincial Council of Segovia and IE University each year
On a university campus where students from over a hundred different countries collide, Segovian Pablo Cuesta has found his home. In just over a year he has made friends from India, Pakistan, Belgium, Italy, Bolivia and Mexico. They’ll chat to each other in English, and sometimes in Spanish too. Telling his story comes naturally to him and he is fulfilled in such an international environment. Of course, IE University is a diverse and multicultural institution, welcoming students from virtually every continent.
In large cities, it’s common for students to have to travel long distances to get to university every day. In Segovia, on the other hand, everything is close by and distances are never too long. You can easily travel between both ends of the city, which is home to about fifty thousand inhabitants. Not all students can say that they attend university in the same city that they live in, or where they grew up—but that is the case of this young university student, currently in his second year of the Bachelor in Communication & Digital Media.
“I pride myself on being Segovian”, says Cuesta, aware that he has become a great ambassador for his city among his classmates. “I’m like their tour guide,” he says, smiling as he assures us “here I can say that my nationality is Segovian.”
He is currently a beneficiary of one of the scholarships offered to young residents of Segovia by the Provincial Council of Segovia and IE University each year. Having received one of these scholarships, his the tuition fees are covered for the entire duration of the program. Cuesta studied at El Peñascal, and while at IES María Moliner he followed the bilingual program. His level of English is practically native, allowing him to seamlessly integrate into his classes at IE University, all of which are taught in English. “Within a week, I had completely adapted,” he says.
“I come from a Spanish family and now I’m studying alongside my classmates from many different countries—every day is very enriching. You learn a lot from other cultures; other ways of thinking. You see life from a more global perspective. I have grown a lot personally in a very short amount of time,” he says.
The first year of Cuesta’s studies were very independent, due to the onset of the pandemic. Nonetheless, IE University launched an innovative educational model called Liquid Learning. This allowed students to attend classes in person or by connecting remotely through the screens installed in the classrooms, delivering the same immersive experience and academic excellence. In order to protect the university community, IE University also introduced health protocols that went beyond official recommendations, safeguarding face-to-face classes and campus life. “Whenever I could go to class in person, I felt very safe because we were constantly testing,” says Pablo Cuesta. The university developed a digital health passport, installed a facial recognition system for access to the campus, and designed a health monitoring app—in addition to reinforcing cleaning and ventilation protocols. All these measures gave Cuesta the peace of mind necessary to fully focus on his studies.
He recognizes that IE University offers him the ideal training for what he’s passionate about: journalism and audiovisual communication. The Bachelor in Communication & Digital Media matched what he was looking for, and he affirms that “it is meeting my expectations.” In addition, he appreciates the wide range of extracurricular activities that IE University offers students, as well as the possibility to join student clubs based on common interests. Cuesta is currently coordinator of the IE Photography Club, creative director and content creator of IE Music Club, communications director for IEU Debate Club, and he also collaborates with the university’s student government.
Alongside these numerous commitments, the young Segovian has also found time to play in his band, Alba, study Arabic, and volunteer for various organizations such as Cáritas and the Hay Festival, an international event which IE University has sponsored for over ten years. From the start of the next academic year, Cuesta plans to study at the IE Tower, the institution’s new hub of technology and sustainability located in the north of Madrid. As one of the world’s first vertical campuses, it stands at 180 meters tall, with 35 floors and an area of 50,000 square meters.
Looking to the future, the young Segovian would like to work in marketing, within the world of entertainment or audiovisual production. “Maybe I’ll start my own company, making the most of the of the university’s entrepreneurship initiatives,” he says. For the time being, however, he is focusing on his studies and sticking to his busy schedule. “Segovia is very much a university city, and strengthening ties between Segovians and university students is a really positive thing,” he concludes. That’s the word of a Segovian.