October 25, 2012 10:00am PT by Lesley Goldberg
'Glee's' Naya Rivera: Santana's 'At a Crossroads'
Glee's Santana Lopez has a lot of decisions to make.
The recent McKinley High graduate left the confines of Ohio for a higher education in Louisville, accepting a cheerleading scholarship rather than taking advantage of her mother's financial blessing to follow her dreams of stardom and move to New York.
Thus far during Glee's fourth season, the former Cherrio can't seem to stay away from Ohio, making regular trips home for laundry and time with her now ex-girlfriend Brittany (Heather Morris).
Santana's (Naya Rivera) last trip home, however, wasn't much of a fun one as she decided to do the "mature thing" and end her relationship with her first love, Brittany.
"I think the breakup really put her at a crossroads and now she doesn't know what to do with herself," Rivera tells The Hollywood Reporter, noting that Santana will be returning home to McKinley for her alma matter's performance of Grease. "She gets to go back to McKinley again, but she's in limbo."
Little of Santana's collegiate career at Louisville has been revealed, other than her hectic cheerleading schedule and Rivera says her character's lack of direction and long-term goals will eventually be addressed.
"I don't think she even knows what her long-term goals are and it does get brought to her attention that she should probably start thinking about those things," Rivera says, adding that it's her hope that Santana joins Kurt (Chris Colfer) and Rachel (Lea Michele) in New York.
Meanwhile, Rivera notes Santana's latest homecoming will be sweet -- provided New Directions pals Brittany and Sam (Chord Overstreet) leave their budding friendship as just that.
"If she was there, I don't think she would be too happy about that, I would hope to God that everyone hid as she would start swinging," Rivera says of a Brittany-Sam romantic pairing.
While there was an "energy exchange" between Santana and one of her Louisville classmates, Rivera hopes that the Fox musical investigates new romance for the recently out cheerleader. "That's an important part of her story that needs to be explored," she says.
While Santana and Brittany's split appears to be for the best right now, Rivera says she hopes the duo will continue to play a large role in one another's lives.
"If you think back to your first love, you always remember them and little things always remind you of them. I feel like that's the relationship that they will always have," she says, noting Santana will also return home for the Thanksgiving-themed episode. "First love is always hard, that's why t hat speech was so beautiful. But long-term? My fingers are crossed for them."
What do you want to see next for Santana? Hit the comments with your thoughts. Glee returns Thursday, Nov. 8 at 9 p.m. on Fox.