About this wonderful woman named Amneri, who is just like you and me but has managed to break through the obstacles that we all face in life. She comes from the struggle of impoverished neighborhoods and broken families that many of us can relate to but she refused to allow that to determine her future. Amneri knew there was more to life than the streets she came from;and she had the courage it took, to go out and get it. I find that many of us don’t appreciate our families and the many opportunities life can present to us and we don’t strive for more. Very often we take advantage of the wrong things in life rather than taking advantage of all the amazing opportunities out there that will help you grow and create a much more fruitful life.Success doesn’t just fall on your lap you have to go out and get it. When Amneri finished summarizing her life and accomplishments in an email,she told me I tried to make it one or two paragraphs but it was impossible. I told her when you are this amazing there’s no way you can sum that up in few sentences and she is interesting enough that people will read. I hope her story down below, will encourage you to strive for more and never allow where you come from to determine your future. We thank Amneri, for being an amazing individual and making a difference somewhere somehow
I’m from Paterson, NJ. moved to New Mexico to work on a Master’s in Speech-Language Pathology, graduated in 2008 from Ramapo College with a BA. , in visual arts and a concentration in photography, worked in Holy Name Hospital as an Electrocardiogram Technician for 3 years and served in Ecuador as a Peace Corps Volunteer in 2010-2013 to work as a Health Promoter in a rural community in which I had the fortune to rediscover my inner-self and know exactly in which direction I wanted my life to go but most importantly, I knew that I wanted to have a future filled of peace and stability in all aspects of my life.
If your reading my bio and say to yourself, I wish I could do the same but I cant because of where I come from or because I don’t have money, then you’ll just be another negative statistic of our society. I, too, come from the ghetto and a dysfunctional family. My father was an alcoholic for 20+ years; all of my adolescent life and my mother emigrated from Colombia, to later become a single mother of 3 children. We all lived off of the system.
However, I was always very observant of my surrounds and took the little role models I had to direct me in life. I always knew I didn’t want to bare children until I finished all of my schooling. It would just be easier for me. Also, I would never judge or look down upon a women who chooses to do it differently.
I remember going to college without any direction, I took up art because it’s what I was best at. Looking back at my life now, I wished I had more guidance from someone in my family, school, elderly, etc. I would have saved so much money and time. I wish I would had read more and become more informed about careers and academics. In reality I was just so clueless and in la la land.
I remember in 2008 when I graduated college, I became the 1st of my immediate family to graduate college. But I still was not satisfied of my accomplishment. I wanted more! A dear aunt of mine gave me a tremendous opportunity in working in a hospital as an EKG tech. It was my playground of learning various fields that I could potentially go into. However, in my personal life I had a lot of heartache and dealt with negative people (friends and family) and men who used and abused me mentally. I wanted to get out! Move, leave, and just get away! I was under such a huge depression that I soaked myself up with movies, in a dark pitch room watching foreign film on Netflix’s. It was then when my life was on the verge of transformation. While watching an Italian film titled “Bella” the Peace Corps was mentioned. I had no clue at that time what it was, so I put the movie on pause and began researching.
It was definitely the best thing that ever happened to me. It involved leaving for 2 years to a foreign country, volunteering and helping communities that where underserved. Another great thing about the Peace Corp was that it helped students get into grad school. I knew at this point it was my way out. Out of the misery and out off all I grew up knowing about life.
My family at that time couldn’t believe that I would actually go through with it. I, too, couldn’t believe it was happening. But one thing I did know was that I would not come back until I finished those two years. It was a life changing experience. I thought that I would go to Ecuador to teach them about proper health habits but intern I was taught about life and how family is valued in their culture. How to sustain a healthy family, how to be a good mother, how to touch people (I don’t even touch my parents), how to be a good friend, just so many life experiences that I value now. Plus, I brought back a treat for me, my wonderful husband, David!
After this journey, everything just went up hill for me. Nothing that I did in my past to get, to where I am today; in such a competitive program (SLP) came easy to me. I had to work very hard and even harder because I am a minority. A proud Latina, which will go out of this life as a success story. After all, isn’t that the point of life? To leave a good legacy for our children and loved ones. I know I am! Never give in or give up, that fight we all have with in.