February 12, 2012
Interview by student Jose Ortega, submitted by teacher Jerald Pike
As adults, it is sometimes hard to imagine life through the lens of a youth. Now imagine life as a high school student who is also new to the United States and/or new to learning English.
English Language Learners from SIATech at Los Angeles Job Corps Center interviewed each other to discover each other's background differences and find out how life in the U.S. has changed them. The following is a write-up of one of the interviews.
Janeth was born in Tijuana, Mexico in 1990. She went to the school there from kindergarten to high school. She has worked in the U.S. and in Mexico as a data entry clerk. She is interested in themes of social importance, her favorites being History and Religions. She likes fine arts and trusts in herself that she will become a philosopher.
Her mother was born in Oaxaca, Mexico, but she lives in Tijuana now. She attended school until high school in her city. At the same time, she studied for a technical career in Office Administration. Her mom lived for a time in the U.S., but then came back to Mexico. Her father is a "Mexican-American" and also finished high school, but after that, he studied to be a police officer and he is still living in the US. She has a brother, too.
Which is different from her country? The American people are very permissive and flexible regarding a lot of affairs. They are often open-minded. Mexicans usually are traditionalists and resistant to change.
Although Janeth also shares American nationality, it was not until March of this year that she decided to reside in the United States. What she most likes about being here is that she can find the least common products everywhere easily, because the United States has a lot of different stores. She feels her strength and confidence, and that by being persistent she will achieve her high school diploma.
Janeth is improving her communication skills in English. The most significant difference in her daily lifestyle in the United States is that in Mexico every single day people go out in the streets and risk their lives because it can be a dangerous country.
SIATech (pronounced SIGH-a-tek) is an award-winning network of charter schools focused on dropout recovery. SIATech is a WASC-accredited high school that operates in partnership with the federal Job Corps and Workforce Investment Act programs on eight campuses throughout California. The school serves 100% low-income and previously out-of-school youth. SIATech excels at identifying student strengths and individualizing instruction to meet each student's needs and goals. The school's safe and caring setting enables students to take charge of their learning and obtain the tools they need for lifetime success, whether it is at their chosen career or further education. For more information on SIATech, watch this short video or visit the SIATech website.