Wales’s universities shared the stage with Welsh actors last week (30 May) at an international reception in the British Consulate General’s residence in Los Angeles.
The reception, which hosted Welsh university partners from around the world, as well as guests from the British Council, Welsh Government, and Universities UK, was supported by LA-based Welsh actors Luca Malacrino and Owain Rhys Davies.
British Consul General Chris O’Connor welcomed the guests and the delegation from Wales, who were in LA for one of the largest gatherings of international educators in the world to promote Wales as a study abroad destination of choice.
Special guests Luca and Owain told the invited audience how growing up in Wales had made them advocates for the nation, and how studying and working abroad themselves had given them perspectives from which students considering universities in Wales could also benefit.
Luca, who has recently been seen in Grey’s Anatomy and Criminal Minds, said: “As a proud Welshman, I can't emphasise enough how welcoming Wales is to international students. I am always explaining to friends in the U.S. how Wales inspires you the moment you arrive and that once you go there it will create ties that will last a lifetime. We need to make sure that Wales isn't a well-kept secret, and this is why I was delighted to work with Study in Wales to help bring Wales to the forefront of higher education for international students. I was fortunate to be an international student myself whilst studying in LA, and I would love to see even more students making the same leap to study across the Atlantic.”
Owain, who is the first Welsh actor to star in David Lynch’s Twin Peaks, also underlined the benefits of studying in Wales. "It was an absolute pleasure being involved in such a marvelous evening and for such a great cause. To be part of making sure Wales is firmly put on the map where it belongs was significant for me as I want the world to be as in love with the land of song as I am. It’s wonderful to see universities work together with such passion and commitment, and I hope that Study in Wales continues its success in bringing institutions together to make Welsh universities famous on the world stage.”
Magician Paul Vu also entertained guests with his tricks, and Hannah Schill photographed the reception. Both are alumni in acting from the University of Wales Trinity Saint David and California State University, Fullerton.