The Grass is Greener on This Side

  • Beatriz T. Valencia


The pathway to education is two sided. The institutional side, and the side of the student. Often, these sides are not in sync. In this essay, I present my personal experience as a student. The process of attainment was both chaotic and filled with personal doubt. Using Anzaldúa's autohistoria as the foundation, I share memories and story to situate the reader in the collective experience of many students of color. The self-awareness gained from the unfolding of pain, healing, and self-reflection throughout this process, is the empowerment of this framework (Anzaldúa & Keaton, 2009). As a consequence of using this method, a new voice emerged. A voice of resistance and persistence. The essay takes the reader on a journey of hope. A journey of choices and adaptations from an immigrant’s point of view. A journey of self-discovery. This story, although not unique, traces the history and its relation to my academic struggles and barriers of assimilation, racism, and exclusion. As an immigrant student, the external forces that distract and fill one with self-doubt were in constant motion. It was the acquisition of knowledge and methorship of kind people that carried me to where I am today, and the realization of my oppression has freed me to share this memoir. This is my story.