First Impressions are Important

Introductions are always so complicated with me:

“What’s your name?”
Cindy Jara.

“So what’s your major?”
Well, that’s a little complicated. My first major is public relations but I want to get a dual degree in criminology. I’m also going to get a minor in women’s studies.

“Where are you from?”
What do you mean? I was born in Colombia but I’ve lived in Kissimmee, Florida, for most of my life. Oh, you don’t know where Kissimmee is? It’s basically Orlando.

Living in a college town means that you are asked your name, major, and where you’re from at least 3 times a day. I have to give long-winded answers when most people’s responses are just one or two words. Memorable, huh?

I decided to start this blog and document my experience as a first generation Latina student at a Predominantly White Institution (PWI). It’s only been one semester and I have enough to write a short book.

Every college student’s experience is different — regardless of race and ethnicity — but the experience for immigrants at an institution where diversity is limited is challenging. I plan on asking other immigrants about their college experiences and what UF has in mind to promote diversity.

In a time where being different can be met with violence, the University of Florida takes pride in its “diversity” and tries to keep the university atmosphere safe for all. I am proud to say that I go to the University of Florida but is it great to be a Florida Gator?

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