Diana Albarrán Chicas
As an immigrant who was the first to graduate from high school, I often read about hard working parents that do their best to support their families. But, I don’t often read about how difficult it can be for those families to acclimate into the American culture. How taxing it can be for both the parents and children to be part of a culture that makes it very difficult for them to engage, whether it be due to language or class barriers.
I don’t often read about how once in college despite our parents best intentions to help us and support us, they unfortunately cannot provide us with tactical guidance with our majors or give us advice to help us land coveted internships. Nor can they help us navigate the complexity of corporate world politics. We must figure all of this out on our own while simultaneously continuing to support our parents and extended families.
Don’t get me wrong; my parents to this day are my inspiration and the source of my strength. They keep me grounded, help me keep things in perspective, and are constant reminders of my values. But, when I show up to work it is not just me showing up, it is me and all the cultural nuances that make me a proud daughter of hard working immigrants. My Latinidad is embedded in me; it evolves with me with every new experience, and is the driving force behind my success.
My intention with this blog going forward is to be honest about the difficulties and struggles I, and many like me, face daily as we strive for success in our academic and professional careers. Not for sympathy, but rather to help share a different perspective and hopefully to help bridge cultural differences.