Margarita Peces Collar has found the Santa Cruz la Real campus in Segovia to be the perfect ecosystem to grow, both personally and academically.
For IE University student Margarita Peces Collar, every day needs more than 24 hours. She’s nonstop. She’s pure dynamism. That’s the first conclusion I reach when I talk to her for the first time. She’s an active young woman, full of positive energy, enthusiastic about everything she does. “Studying at IE University has changed my life” she says firmly. On the historic campus of Santa Cruz la Real in Segovia, where Margarita is in her second year of IE University’s Bachelor in International Relations, she has found the perfect ecosystem to grow, both personally and academically.
Margarita unleashed all her vivacity the moment she set foot on campus—she was hungry to learn, eager to improve herself, itching to give free rein to her entrepreneurial spirit. Her latest news: she has just returned from Geneva, where she and fellow members of the IE University Debate Club won six awards in an international Model United Nations competition.
“I really like to keep busy—having a purpose motivates me. I always collaborate as much as I can with IE Campus Life and IE University’s Gender Equality Office through my position as vice president of the IE University Segovia chapter of the Girl Up Club. I invest a lot of my time in organizing activities and social-impact initiatives, many of them focused on women and equality,”
Although she was born in Palma de Mallorca, Margarita has lived in Segovia since she was a child. As a child, she studied at the Colegio de los Maristas, which shaped her as a person, instilling her with solid values. She showed herself to be a very bright student from an early age, “although if I look back, I realize that in those years I was too hard on myself—I was a perfectionist,” she says. Her arrival at IE University was the decisive step for her to discover her true vocation: to train as a professional in the field of diplomacy and politics, “and to try to understand the world we’re living in.”
Margarita began her degree in International Relations with the help of one of the scholarships that the Provincial Government of Segovia and IE University offer each year to young residents of Segovia. “Studying everything in English—with all the technical vocabulary of the subjects, surrounded by classmates who spoke English as their first language—made my first semester really hard,” she says honestly. However, she adds, “I adapted very quickly. I’m really happy at IE University. I don’t regret deciding to study here and beginning my degree in Segovia.” Curiosity is perhaps the main driving force behind Margarita’s energy. She wants to understand today’s world, globalized as it is, and in constant turmoil.
“I’m very interested in politics, understanding the origin of international conflicts and figuring out how they can be solved through history and the whole background that exists. In the future, I would love to work in fields of social impact, diplomacy and politics,”
To strengthen her knowledge, Margarita travels whenever she can, visiting new countries, cities and landscapes, “and taking thousands of photos back home with me.” She believes that language learning is essential (she is bilingual in Spanish and English and has a solid knowledge of French). More than anything, she’s passionate about reading everything she can get her hands on about international relations.
“I’m someone who keeps busy,” she admits, although she tries to balance her day-to-day life to make room for free time as well. “What makes you happy?” I ask her. “I love going out with my friends,” she replies. “Meeting up for a drink in the Plaza Mayor, spending time with my family and friends, going out for lunch or dinner with them.”
Without neglecting her social side, this young native of Segovia firmly believes that keeping an organized schedule is essential to achieving her goals. “I always plan out my week because I want to keep on top of my work, but without sacrificing time to enjoy the company of the people I love. I also value alone time. I let myself rest, sit down to read and write, listen to music, play sports and, especially to walk around Segovia with my music to take a break from things,” she says.
She is proud to be from Segovia on a campus that brings together students with more than a hundred different nationalities. “My teachers refer to me as ‘the local’,” she says. Margarita is aware that because of her direct link with Segovia, she has become a great reference point for her classmates. “Many people turn to me when they want to know where a street is or where buy something they need, although, of course, I’m not an encyclopedia and I don’t know everything,” she explains with a smile. Margarita wants to maximize the potential of her time at university. Right now, it’s what brings fullness to her life.
“I don’t think I’ll ever have the level of happiness, security and self-confidence that I have now at IE University. It has changed my life, and it has changed me.”