Photo of Thiago Martins De Magalhaes

Thiago Martins De Magalhaes '13: Worldly Writer

By Maegan Beasley ‘13

Thiago Martins De Magalhaes '13, an international student from Brazil, has made quite an impression at McKendree University. From his first semester on campus, Thiago engaged himself in many activities and currently participates in the International Student Organization (ISO), the McKendree Review, and choir. While he admits when someone tries to involve themselves in many things, sometimes it is hard to fully immerse yourself in everything. Thiago turned this into a “positive thing" and took something from each aspect of the university.

The students in ISO were the first people Thiago met at McKendree and really welcomed him. Part of this group’s goal is to help international students make a second home while in college. “I was surprised at how people treated me,” said Thiago. “They were very caring.” ISO has many different students from different cultures who are a team. Collectively, the students plan activities to get to know each other during the school year. They share dishes that originated in their own culture and play games specific to their home country.

Through this organization, Thiago’s impression of the United States changed. He says that McKendree has helped to define himself. "Now I feel like I should keep that train going. I want to continue doing the same thing for others.” With this optimistic outlook, Thiago became a chairman of the executive board and helps with public relations and advertising. He tries to spread the message that ISO is not solely about international students, but that they try to help other McKendree students understand different cultures as well.

I love to write and have always wanted to do something related to journalism.

Thiago also impacted McKendree through his writing. “I love to write and have always wanted to do something related to journalism,” he noted. He actively wrote for the McKendree Review which he feels was a great opportunity to get work published. By writing different articles, Thiago learned how to approach people and speak to them about different ideas. “The McKendree Review helped me most by giving me the confidence to talk to other people in English,” he said.

With a major in History, Thiago will be able to relate background information he learned and direct it towards his journalism career. He currently interns at a LGBT publication, The Vital Voice, in St. Louis, Missouri. With the presidential election near, working there informs Thiago about how politics affect the gay community. “I enjoy representing something that is usually oppressed,” he said. Before the internship, Thiago admitted that he was a little worried about what was going to happen after graduation. Presently, he is more confident knowing that he is now well-prepared for a journalism career.

Thiago will soon be able to apply what he learned at McKendree towards his future. In December of 2012 he will graduate and subsequently move back to Brazil. “I plan on working for a year or two at a magazine company, and then I’ll apply for graduate school,” said Thiago. Whatever his future holds, Thiago knows McKendree prepared him for the unknown. “I don’t regret anything,” he said. “I now pursue new things I didn’t have the courage to try before.”