Claudia Madrigal

From: Torres Novas, Portugal  Current City: Mankato, MN
"I see things from a different perspective. I am not completely Portuguese, but I am not completely American either."
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Being a young mother in a foreign country was the most challenging experience Claudia Madrigal has endured. In the end, she became a much stronger individual because of it.

Born in Torres Novas, Portugal in 1977, Ms. Madrigal enjoyed a childhood with five siblings. When she was thirteen years old, her parents divorced, and she moved to the capital city, Lisbon, with her father. When she was in high school, Claudia got the idea of studying abroad in the United States after a presentation on foreign exchange.

In 1994, Claudia traveled to Faribault, Minnesota to complete her senior year of high school at Bethlehem Academy. The following year, she returned to the U.S. and earned her A.A. at Riverland Community College. She then attended Minnesota State University, Mankato where she double-majored in Social Studies Secondary Education and Psychology. Ms. Madrigal began her teaching career as a student teacher at Minnesota New Country School—a project-based charter school in Henderson, Minnesota. After graduating, she became a substitute teacher for several schools around Mankato.

Since 2005, Ms. Madrigal has worked at Riverbend Academy Charter School in Mankato where she teaches Social Studies to high school students. In addition to teaching, she shares her unique perspective with her community by volunteering with the Greater Mankato Diversity Council—an organization which aims to foster a community of mutual respect towards all people regardless of races, ethnicity, religion, age, gender, or sexual orientation. Claudia takes advantage of her long summer vacations by frequently visiting Portugal. She lives in Mankato with her two children.

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