Global Gauchos

Global Gauchos connects with UC Santa Barbara Alumni doing extraordinary things all over the world. From continent to continent, the spirit of Gaucho community continues to grow worldwide. Learn the stories of  Gauchos abroad and how UCSB has supported their journey.


Gianna Ross, Global Studies ‘20

I went from sunny Isla Vista beaches to the unique art scene of Berlin in what felt like a matter of seconds. To me, UCSB is home. It was relaxing, it was fun, and my main form of transportation was my trusty beach cruiser. Now, I basically live on the U-bahn, I’m taking Comparative Politics in German, and I’m learning how to manage social life, school, and career on a greater scale. 

At UCSB, I juggled two internships on campus, played on the club Volleyball team, and still maintained a good academic standing. In Berlin, I am living a whole different life. I spent the first month in and out of hostels as I searched for living arrangements, on top of taking intensive German language courses Monday through Friday. One of the biggest things I’ve taken away from UCSB that has helped me here is the importance of community and support. I felt such a strong sense of community as I walked the streets of Isla Vista and bumped into familiar faces. In Berlin, making an effort to keep that UCSB community has really made my experience. My program has gone to football games, got together for a huge Thanksgiving potluck, and instead of meeting at Sands Beach, we’re meeting in cozy coffee shops in the heart of Kreuzberg. 

Berlin has so much history that you can truly feel as you walk around the city. Its dark history coupled with the progressive and creative Berlin that exists today makes it like no other city in the world. I have felt nothing but welcome here and I’m so grateful for the opportunity to represent UCSB in the “poor but sexy” city of Berlin.