As a young Chicana there are many things that concern me with this country’s structure and normalities. I am writing this letter to inform you about my personal concerns as well as why these issues are important to not only myself, but to everyone in the country who might feel the same way as I do.
My parents immigrated to this country approximately 21 years ago to provide a better life for my siblings and I. Growing up, my family has always struggled financially and along with the struggle came with pressure from my parents to excel in school. At a young age, my dad would always tell me I have to grow up to become a lawyer or doctor so I could help them in the future. I always carried those words in the back of my mind at my most stressful moments because I feel like I have a very specific responsibility from my parents that I need to accomplish.
In high school, I was always very focused on my view of going to college and getting good grades. It wasn’t until my senior year where I started focusing on how I was going to pay for it. Hearing my parents talk in the kitchen at 5:30 in the morning before work about how they just don’t have the money to send me to college is terrifying. The more Financial Aid workshops I attended, the more nervous I got for my family to have to get informed on ways to pay for my tuition. Money is a very stressful and personal issue in my family, so telling strangers that we don’t have much is embarrassing.
Now, getting ready to attend CSUC in the fall and being the first in my family to go to college has brought me with emotions of excitement and anxiety. I am very anxious because I feel that the financial struggle my family already has will increase because of the cost of my tuition. I have to take out a loan from the university in order to pay off some of my tuition while I’m in school and that scares me. I don’t want to be drowning in debt right after graduation just so I can be successful.
I feel like money in this country should be better budgeted towards all educational systems. I hope that when I’m older and ready to send my kids off to college, I won’t have to worry about tuition costs as much as my parents do now. I wouldn’t want my children to have the mutual feeling of being a burden on myself as their parent like I do with mine.