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2022 alumna in Poland with state department program

Nahommy at Malbork CastleTwo years ago, Nahommy Jimenez would have never imagined herself living in the United States, let alone Europe.


But Europe is where this Sam Houston High School graduate currently resides. The 2022 San Antonio ISD alumna is a member of the inaugural U.S. State Department’s FLEX Abroad program in Poland.


In August 2021, Jimenez moved from Mexico to San Antonio and spent her senior year at Sam Houston, where she learned English. 


“My experience at Sam Houston was really great,” Jimenez said. “I found a lot of friends and supportive staff, especially in the college application process.”


Jimenez got involved in basketball and started a branch of Girl Up, a United Nations campaign that expands girls’ skills, rights, and opportunities to lead.


Her teachers helped her learn English, and she used all the resources she could find to invest in her future.


“When I moved to the states, my English level was not really good and I felt like maybe this language barrier would not let me advance in some ways,” Jimenez said. 


She persisted, finding the FLEX Abroad scholarship opportunity on Google, and wrote the two application essays with the help of a translator. She got in. She deferred her admission to Trinity University, and just two months after graduating from Sam Houston in June, she arrived in Warsaw. 


She lives with a Polish host family and is learning with a cohort of four Americans. The program covered all her travel and living expenses. 


Again, a language learner, she attends a local school in Poland to meet people from the community, practice her Polish, and learn more about the culture.


“It was challenging at first but I’m a very flexible person,” Jimenez said. “Adversity and drastic changes help me grow more as a person and now I can see different perspectives people have around the world.”


She is also now helping others learn English, volunteering at a multicultural center and teaching English to Ukrainian refugees.


“Since Poland is very close to Ukraine, the situation here has opened up my eyes,” Jimenez said.


Set to return to the United States in June, she’ll pick up with her education at Trinity University, majoring in International Relations and Public Policy. 


She says she encourages others to apply to this life-changing program, no matter the obstacles.


“Sometimes we feel we have to stop ourselves if we are not achieving the things we want to, but honestly, there are a lot of ways to get where you want to be,” Jimenez said. “So don’t give up really easily. When you are passionate and you want to achieve something, nothing is really far away from reality.”

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