Skip to main content

Erika Malaspina

ACE in China: 2017
School
Stanford University
Class
2020
Team
Track and Field (Women's)
Hometown
Santa Cruz, CA
Major(s)
Undecided
ACE Ambassador View Erika's ambassador profile. View Profile
Profile View Erika’s Student-Athlete profile on gostanford.com

I have always loved working with children, and the ACE Program allows me to continue working with kids in a community other than my own. Furthermore, I am extremely grateful for the opportunity to travel abroad, which is something I have never been able to do and something I didn’t think I would have the chance to experience in college.

As part of the ACE in China program, participants will contribute to the sustainable development of underserved communities through youth environmental education and sports while learning about conservation and preservation in Yunnan Province.

Erika’s past experiences with service include involvement in HELP4Kids, a Stanford organization that helps educate elementary and middle school students on a variety of health topics, from proper nutrition to exercise.

ACE Ambassador Profile

ACE participant high fives kids

Erika is a sophomore who is a pole vaulter on the Stanford Track and Field team. She is majoring in Mathematical and Computational Science and minoring in Biology. Before ACE, Erika had never been out of the country. The ACE program reinvigorated her love of service and sparked a desire to connect with people of other cultures outside of her own. Upon returning to campus, Erika started taking classes to learn more about Chinese culture, and expanded her involvement in public service at Stanford. She feels that the ACE program is an invaluable program for student athletes that allows them to travel abroad and experience cultures that they would otherwise not be able to.

Want to hear more about Erika’s ACE experience? Contact Erika.

Dear Future #ACEathletes,

  • Best advice for learning about ACE: There are lots of resources to utilize if you want to learn more about ACE! If you’re not sure if ACE is for your which program would best fit your interests, go to the information session, check out the website, and talk to the ACE ambassadors!
  • Best advice for applying for ACE: Be genuine in your application. Don’t try to exaggerate your interests or enthusiasm because you think that’s what will get you accepted. Instead, be honest about why this type of trip is appealing to you and how you would be a good for the program.
  • Best advice for getting started at your program: Transitioning to a new culture, new time zone, and new community takes time! Be prepared to take a few days to acclimate to your surroundings, and try to take everything in with an open mind.
  • Tips for getting to know your community: Making an effort to connect is the most important step to getting to know the community that you’re in. Make a point to speak to the locals, the staff, and even try to learn a bit of the language! Even if you are not able to communicate a ton, people appreciate the effort.
  • Tips for training: Try to make a realistic plan before you leave about what types of exercises you can do when you are on the ground, so when you are already there you don’t have to worry about coming up with workouts.