Catalina Garzon, a Colombian LL.M. student, shares about her Wake Forest Law experience

Catalina Garzon (second to the left) is pictured with Mauricio Zuluaga (Colombia, LL.M., '13), Maria Travers (Nicaragua, LL.M., '13) and Joel De Leon (Panama, S.J.D., '13)

Catalina Garzon (second to the left) is pictured with Mauricio Zuluaga (Colombia, LL.M., ’13), Maria Travers (Nicaragua, LL.M., ’13) and Joel De Leon (Panama, S.J.D., ’13)

Ms. Catalina Garzon Serna is a scholar from LASPAU, which administers the portion of the Fulbright Program that provides grants to individuals from Latin America and the Caribbean for graduate study in the United States.  Ms. Garzon is a member of the Colombian Bar and the Legal Director of Personal Banking and Banking for Small and Mid-Sized Businesses at Bancolombia S.A.  Previously, she was a Senior Lawyer at Leasing Bancolombia and a Lawyer at Banco de Occidente S.A. She has also taught Leasing Contracts (Banking Law) at Universidad CES. Ms. Garzon earned a degree in Law and Political Science and a post-graduate degree in Financial and Business Law from Universidad Pontificia Bolivariana. She has focused her LL.M. studies on banking, corporate finance, and securities law. Because only six out of ten Colombian citizens have access to financial products, Ms. Garzon’s goal is to return to Bancolombia and make financial products, such as savings accounts and loans, more accessible to everyone. Ms. Garzon will graduate from the Master of Laws LL.M. program in May of 2013.

Where is home? What is it famous for?

My home country is Colombia, located in South America. It is famous for producing the finest coffee in the world, huge variety of flowers and for its beautiful landscapes.  The country is also well known for its friendly people and their entrepreneurial spirit. I am from Medellín, the second largest city in the country. In 2012 Medellín was awarded by the Wall Street Journal as the innovative city of the year, before other cities like New York and Tel Aviv.

Have you been to the U.S. before?

I visited the U.S. two years ago with the aim of improving my English skills.  I took an English course in Delaware. At that time I had decided that I was going to pursue a master degree in the U.S., having in mind the quality of education and the variety of opportunities that this country offers.

 What are the most notable differences between home and Winston-Salem, N.C.?

One of the most notable differences between Winston-Salem and my hometown is the peaceful environment that offers a small city like Winston, in comparison with a vast city like Medellín with more than two million people. Furthermore, the landscapes are totally different, my hometown is surrounded by mountains and the weather is warmer than here.  In Winston-Salem you can feel that you are breathing clean air due to its huge trees and all the nature you can see all over the city.   Continue reading »