I was born and raised in a small unknown town in Jalisco, Mexico. The truth is that I was actually born in a taxi on our way to one of the only hospitals in the city of Guadalajara. I am the youngest of three children when I was born both my brother and sister were teenagers. I attended a public school that was just for girls all the way through the fourth grade. I wasn't involved in any extracurriculars or played any sports growing up.
Growing up, college wasn't really an option back in Mexico. I moved to the United States for the first time when I was ten years old. I didn't speak a word of English! Financial struggles had been an issue for as long as I can remember. My dad lived in the United States working a full-time minimum wage job, sending us whatever he could back to Mexico. I would only see him once a year as I was growing up.
When I moved to Arizona for the first time all of my teachers spoke about college and I remember they took us on a field trip to ASU, during the seventh grade. I mentioned it to my parents but we still couldn't afford college. Neither my mom or my dad or my two siblings went to college. My sister is married to a wonderful man that went to college and has three beautiful daughters. My brother in law is perhaps the only person in my family that went to college. I've always been a good student, and I've always loved going to school. Since I wasn't really involved in any extracurriculars growing up, my academics are what I've focused on.
Everyone that now surrounded me in this country was so passionate about getting this generation to obtain a higher education. My reading teacher; Mr. Mejia, who helped me a lot with learning English and getting me adapted to this new life, I will always remember me that he told me he saw "potential" in me. He had a similar background to me and had also moved here from Mexico. I could still not comprehend what he meant by that, I was only ten years old and was so wonderstruck by this new world around me.
The sixth through the seventh grade were the most challenging years of my life. I started with zero knowledge and ended seventh grade with an adequate amount of learning to help me survive the eighth grade. My accent diminished in high school, and I began to adapt. Thankfully, I met my best friend Erika, who's been my best friend since the very first day I moved here. I am extremely thankful for all my teachers that supported me so much at my elementary/middle school.
Going to college was all a dream through middle school, then high school came around and the college talks began. ASU was on the top of my list, but it was all gonna come down to whichever school I could afford. I obtained the Obama Scholarship and the Cesar Chavez Scholarship sponsored by Coca-Cola, and on top of that my FASFA. It wasn't a full ride, but it made my college dream possible. Deciding what I was going to major in was the toughest decision out of all, I was a nutrition major my first semester but I realized that I wanted to pursue an actual career in writing. My parents were extremely happy that I was going to stay in Arizona and would only be a couple of minutes away from them. They have supported all my decisions and dreams about my career and accomplishing it. Here I am, majoring in English (creative writing) and I am proud to say that this is my Sun Devil story.
Nayeli Lopez Guzman.