Thursday, March 26, 2009

Essay for scholarship

Being raised in a working class family, I know what it means to work hard in order to get a job done. The values instilled unto me by my parents have helped me prosper in school and in my journalistic endeavors. Having been brought to the U.S. at seven as luggage by my parents, I have spent the majority of my time in my adoptive country trying to find my identity, while acting as a liaison for my family. Having three younger sister helped me realize that I needed to be an example to them by being the first to graduate from high school and attend college. As a child my parents moved around a lot and I was given the unique opportunity to see the best of worst of my adoptive home. Living in Compton, South Central, Watts and East Los Angeles helped me develop mentally and emotionally in spite of the chronic violence and poverty afflicting my past homes. Even though I could have fallen through the systems cracks, the unbreakable bonds I have with my family over powered that. Throughout my life, I have never excelled at anything and always felt insignificant over the fact that as hard as I tried to apply myself, it was never enough. For a span of three years after high school, I worked numerous jobs that included selling fruit, shaved ice and hot dogs in carts, apprentice electrician and store clerk. After working go-nowhere jobs I decided to fulfill my parents prophesy of being a successful educated young man and I enrolled at East Los Angeles College. One of the first classes I took was Journalism 101 in the fall of 2005 and I have never looked back. I have taken to journalism like Superman takes to flying. Since then, I have grown exponentially both in my abilities to be a reporter, but more importantly in developing self-esteem and confidence in my abilities. Through my writing, I have had the opportunity to meet tremendous people who have taken me under their wing and continue to help me excel in my studies and personal development. These and numerous experiences have helped me realize the needed role of Latino/a journalist in the mainstream and independent media. As a blogger, I have seen major media discriminate and almost ignore my neighborhood. Through my blogging on, I have written entries about current/social events that have taken place and featured artist and community spaces that are contributing back to the community. I use my personal blog, to chronicle my daily endeavors as an undocumented college student and advocating for various causes like the federal DREAM Act. Blogging has open doors for me and include becoming the Associate Editor for the community newspaper “Brooklyn & Boyle.”  As a reporter, I recognize the importance of writing about under represented communities. I use all of these creative outlets to tell stories about my community and my people because if I don’t do it, no one else will.