Who am I? Wrestling with identity— our history, our culture, our language— is central to being human, and there’s no better way to come to grips with questions of identity than through the crossing of borders. The transcendence of borders reveals the fluid nature of identity, it challenges absurd notions of rigid nationalities, and highlights our common humanity. It is no coincidence, then, that my experience as an immigrant has shaped my academic journey and pushed me to pursue graduate studies.
I was born in Culiacán, Sinaloa, Mexico, to the unlikely couple of a German american mother and a Mexican father. At the time that my parents decided to leave Mexico, my native state of Sinaloa was in the midst of a growing trend of proliferate narco …show more content…
I was part of the Center On Migration, Citizenship and Development (COMCAD) program, where students carried out independent research projects related to transnational trends around the globe. I investigated the integration process of Turkish immigrants through the German school system. While in Germany, I felt myself listening to my Latin American pulse, and I became connected with the Inter-American Studies department at Bielefeld University. I attended symposiums and lectures on issues pertaining to the Americas, to include not just Latin America, but transnationalist trends across the U.S. and Canada as well.
When I returned to Portland, I fell right into the work force, and through my practice in the field of Social Work I engaged with the outermost edges of our society. People of all backgrounds— refugees, single parents, drug addicts, prison inmates—all committed to finding a sense of belonging and dignity in the world. Finding ways to empower my fellow human beings required creativity, solidarity and knowledge about each individual’s sense of identity and