I am a rising senior from Norwalk, CT in the English department and pursuing certificates in creative writing, theater and Latin American studies. A few of my many interests include running, hiking, writing and teaching and also…mentoring!
I have always loved writing creatively, and yet never considered undertaking the craft in a serious manner until I arrived at Princeton. After enrolling in my first creative writing course my sophomore spring, i fell in love with the workshop environment, the safe space where I could take risks with my writing and receive critical and supportive feedback on my work. My junior fall, I took my first playwriting class and attached immediately to this type of creative writing that was new and foreign to me. So it has really only been less than two years since I stumbled upon my first writing workshop/seminar, and frankly, these have been the most challenging, illuminating and creative years of my life. For my senior thesis in creative writing and Latin American studies, I am writing a collection of short stories based upon the Guatemalan-American experience, tying in Mayan myths to connect with and also plague modern day immigrant characters today. For my combined English/Theater thesis, I am writing a play about a modern immigrant family struggling to find their place in both the united states and their homeland of Mexico. The current title is Tierra Fuerte, which translates to “strong earth,” a phrase can be loosely interpreted as having (or not having) a strong footing in one’s current place.
I've had and sometimes continue to have trouble finding my footing in this country, this state, and this school. I moved to the us from Guatemala when I was seven years old, only knowing a couple of words of English and knowing close to nothing about this beast of a country. My definition of home has changed greatly over the course of my life, and as weird and hard as that has been, it has been something exciting to explore through writing, through questioning my different identities, questioning my inner home. It used to be deeply rooted in my Latino ethnicity, and yet my definition of home, of where I feel the most comfortable, has also been influenced by accepting my sexuality, by acknowledging that I came from a low-income household, by being proud that I am a first generation student at this school. And so what makes me most excited about being a peer mentor is having the opportunity to say "here I am! This is me! Reach out to me if you have ever felt alone or out of place because of who you are and want to create art about that!" because every one of us can and should be able to find a home not only at Princeton, but also in the Lewis Center, where we have the unparalleled opportunity to allow our art to tell the stories we've been dying to and might have held back from telling in the past.