“I did my research well,” the 18-year-old freshman from Lithuania says.
The daughter of a Lithuanian-American mother and Hungarian-American father, Monika picked Dominican to pursue her communications studies. She did so after hours upon hours of Googling American colleges and universities, comparing their rankings and admission requirements, and having visited several last year.
“I got tons of research. Seriously, I haven’t slept in like a half year,” Monika jokes.
Monika's mother, who attended college in Santa Barbara, had heard of Dominican’s reputation from friends and Barta, through the Internet, loved what she saw and read about the University, its deans and its heritage.
I always dreamed of studying in California. I strived to improve my GPA, my English, to prepare for the SAT, and researching universities for several years now.
After Monika overcame her fear of flying to get to Dominican, she instantly met another challenge. Though she passed the California High School Proficiency Exam in English last school year, English, behind German, is the second weakest of the four languages Barta knows.
“My first class here was public speaking. How funny is that?” she says, grinning, in her slight eastern European accent. “But I believe if you don’t get out of your own comfort zone, there is nowhere to go.”
Barta has high expectations. She considered majoring in business and eyed the Hult International Business School in London, but communications seemed like a more natural fit.
“Communications is more suitable for me because of my personality,” she says. “I’m outgoing. I like talking loudly. People listen to me, no matter my accent.”
Barta is looking forward to taking advantage of the quality and volume of hands-on learning opportunities in Dominican’s communications and media studies department.
“Another thing I love about Dominican is you actually don’t just get the theory, you get the practice,” Barta says. “That is the most important part about communications.”