Stella Clivillés

Image: 
Body: 

1) Please explain what you do for living.

I am currently a sophomore student at Pitt but I also work part-time as an after-school worker at the Falk School.

2) How important in your identity is being Latino?

I was born and raised in San Juan, Puerto Rico, so first and foremost I am Puerto Rican. Being Latino, however, is not something I heavily advertise. Being Latino to me is just a part of life. As someone who grew up somewhere where Latinos were the majority, it was other parts of my identity that helped me stand out. In a way, the Latino part of me was a base of which I could build my current identity. It’s like asking an American how important in his identity is being American.

3) Is there something that you particularly value of your nationality or being Latino?

No matter how long I live in the United States, my native language will always be Spanish. It’s not a matter of heritage, it’s just the way I think. In culture, I staunchly believe the Puerto Rican Christmas celebrations are the best. It basically starts right after Thanksgiving and ends somewhere around mid-January. We are very serious about Christmas.

4) Have you been treated differently because of being Latino (in the workplace, in public settings…etc.)? If so, can you describe a situation?

I do not believe I have ever been treated differently because of being Latino. To be fair, I’m only ever in the States for school. The only small inconvenience I sometimes run into is my pronunciation of certain words. Even though back in Puerto Rico I mostly spoke English with my friend group, there are some words I just never learned to pronounce properly. I’ll sometimes mistranslate words from Spanish into English giving the people around me a little laugh. I usually don’t have a prominent accent of any kind but when really tired all language defenses drop and I suddenly have a very noticeable Hispanic accent. However, it has never really affected me in a negative way.