The Answer, My Friend — Is Blowing In The Wind

As a young WOC, a fancy office job was only but a far fetched dream to me. Since I was 16, I have been working in fast-paced, minimum wage jobs to support myself and my family. To me, these jobs did not seem temporary, simply a foreshadowing of a lifetime full of autopilot days in unfulfilling jobs. There was no exact day I can pin point to when I realized I had the ability to change the future (DeLorean?). However, I owe it to my college mentor, Dr. Lenaghan, for pushing me to see how far I can go (literally). He, myself, and my family inspired me to continue my education far from home at Boston University. A year later and here I am sitting in my own fancy office, in the extremely cold federal building of the Department of Interior, working for the National Park Service to teach kids about Latino Heritage through Archaeology. Not to mention, during my first couple of days, I have been roaming the halls of the DOI Library, opening book after book and learning about my own heritage to teach it to kids who were just like me, to be inspired to pursue careers and feel inspired to continue their education. When I walk to my office wing and see the “National Park Service” sign, I immediately feel imposter syndrome, but then I remember Melissa at 17 years old and remind myself of the hard work I put in to get here! The rhetoric has changed and I now ask myself, “what else will I accomplish within my lifetime”?

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