What is your idea of perfect happiness?
My idea of perfect happiness used to be to make enough money to not be so worried about finances, but that’s what put me in the wrong major in the first place. Then I watched two movies that influenced my definition of happiness; “The Giver” and “The Pursuit of Happyness.” Now I’ve realized that perfect happiness in my eyes is not to be alive, but to be living and being grateful for everything we are given — little things like color and music to big things like compassion and diversity. I’m striving for a future where I don’t feel like I’m going to work because I enjoy my career that much. As long as I am happy in my career and giving back to my community and those who need it, I’ll feel happier than those people who won the Powerball.
What is your greatest fear?
My greatest fear is failure. In the past I didn’t believe that I could achieve much. I’ve also been told that, based on where I’m from. No one thought I’d go to college and get a bachelor’s degree, but now I’m graduating and going on to a master’s program at Claremont Graduate University in California. I don’t fear mistakes here and there, but I do fear failing to fulfill my dreams, goals, and the expectations I have for myself. Throughout my time at State I’ve developed a sense that I am capable of achieving something, and that’s led me to grasp every opportunity that has come my way. I hope I never lose this drive because I wish to always improve and learn all that life has to offer.
What trait do you like least about yourself?
Throughout my life I’ve had to do quite a bit on my own which has taught me traits such as self-determination and perseverance but it has also made me very hard on myself. I can be impatient at times and hesitant to ask questions. I am a bit of perfectionist, so I never feel done with anything, probably because I constantly look for improvement and innovation. I’ve also been called a workaholic quite a bit which has made me realize that I’ve had a hard time balancing my social life, work, extra-curriculars, and my academics. I don’t like that and I hope that I can learn to manage time away from my career in the future.
Which historical figure do you most identify with?
Hands down would be Walt Disney! I am a strong believer in growing old but never growing up. I am in love with his sense of imagination and creativity. Walt Disney used uplifting stories and moral allegories to capture the imagination of an audience. In addition, he was a tremendous business person who was not daunted by failure. His animations bring out the child in everyone. My friends will tell you that I’m 23 going on 5. I enjoy thinking like an adult, but acting like a little kid at times. Anyone who knows me knows my mantra is Dory’s quote “Just Keep Swimming.” My niece made me watch “Finding Nemo” at the perfect moment; it was a time in my life I felt more lost than Dory. Disney changed my perception on life and I didn’t realize that until adulthood.
Who is someone you’ve met at Indiana State you’ll remember the rest of your life?
This is the hardest question. In five years here there is a long list of people who I will remember forever, but someone who I really want to highlight is the University Art Gallery Director Meredith Lynn. With years of my time spent here, the most influential one has been this last year and that is because of her. In her first year here she quickly became a part of the Sycamore family, and has had an impact on so many students. I wish I could go to my Curatorial Studies class with a tape recorder because I never want to miss a thing she says. That is what has been a remarkable trait about her; people enjoy just being around her because of what they can learn, and she has a hilarious sense of humor. She’s done a great job educating students about the professional art world. She’s collaborated in her first year here with local community leaders to better the city and that helped me gain more confidence to get an internship with a local art leader here in Terre Haute. She has inspired me to want to pursue a career in arts administration. I foresee her as a lifelong friend and mentor.
Which talent would you most like to have?
I wish to be fluent in multiple languages. I see such a benefit to being able to travel and speak to many different people. I feel so ashamed at times that I am not fluent in Spanish, being Hispanic. I speak a lot of “Spanglish” and it gets me from point A to point B and through conversations with my parents, but “Hola, como estas” can only get me so far. Thanks, Dora.
What do you consider your greatest achievement?
There are a few things that I’m really proud of. It’s hard to pick just one. Over the past nearly two years I put myself in one of the toughest challenges, a weight loss journey and I lost 80 pounds and 10 pants sizes, which has been great. More importantly, though, my journey has inspired others. I am also the first person in my family to be receiving a bachelor’s degree, which is definitely one of my biggest achievements. I am also really proud of the extracurricular work that I did at ISU. With two other students, I formed the Student Curatorial Guild, and this semester we produced our first exhibition.
If you were to die and come back as a person or thing, what do you think it would be?
It would be Ellen DeGeneres. I love the feeling of helping people. It makes me feel like I am fulfilling a purpose. It’s remarkable to see people’s reaction when you have just played a huge part in changing their life. I couldn’t imagine feeling that each and every day in the way that she does. A smile would never leave my face. Also, having better jokes would be nice too.
What do people notice first about you?
From what I’ve been told; my charisma, my smile, or my positivity, but maybe I should ask a friend to be sure.
What does BLUE mean to you?
BLUE means being a part of something and having a purpose. My email signature always starts “With Sycamore Pride,” and that’s because ISU has helped me to achieve so many things that I’m proud of. BLUE means being a part of a Sycamore family, and like any family, those of us in the Sycamore family help each other to accomplish goals that seemed impossible before. I’ll always BLEED BLUE.