This I Believe

Marco - Sun Valley, California
Entered on October 22, 2006
Age Group: 18 - 30

I believe ordinary people have the power to impact other peopple’s lives. All major events that had a great impact and a turning point in my life have been possible by somebody extending a helping hand to me.

I was born on 1986 in Jalisco, Mexico and when I was six years old my family made the long trip to the United States. Arriving at a new country where the every day life is different than the life at a small town in Jalisco, can be very frightening as well as challenging to anyone.

When I arrived at Los Angeles I began the first grade a few months before the school year was over. I found it really difficult to learn things because everything was in a language I did not understand. I was allowed to go on to the second grade, but I was put into a class which had a teacher assistant who knew Spanish. This teacher’s assistant was great, he provided me with a lot of help and by the end of that school year I was much more comfortable with the English language.

In the fourth grade, Mrs. Downey, who was a great caring teacher, notice that I was ready to move on to a regular English class. She took the time to inform the person in charge that I no longer needed to be placed with bilingual teachers or bilingual teacher’s assistants. I when through some testing that would indicate if I was ready to move on to regular English and I past them. It felt great! I no longer had to be set aside with a few students to learn new material in Spanish.

The fifth grade was an important year in my life. I discovered my ability and passion for soccer with the help of Reymundo. Reymundo worked as an after school supervisor, he provided balls and board games to those students who stayed after school. I still remember the first words he ever told me: “You look like a soccer player. Would you like to stay after school and play in a soccer tournament that I am about to create?” I had never been part of a team. In fact, I did not played soccer, except once in a while with my uncles and cousins when we would get together at a park. However, I excitedly said “Yes”, but I also said that I had to tell my mom first. Since that day my passion for soccer grew as a flower does in spring. I when on to play in a club team in which I won many trophies as well as first place medals. I also played for my High School and made the varsity team as a sophomore. I became the co-captain as a junior and the captain as a senior. I received awards like; best defender, scholar athlete of the year, and M.V.P. of the year. Those are the best years of my childhood and I owe it all to a man who took the time to let me know that he saw some real potential in me.

My life after High School was a very confusing time for me. Even though I had been saying that I wanted to be an Elementary Teacher since I graduated from Elementary School, I had grown to have some doubts. I was struggle ling to find my identity. However, with the help of my consular, Mr. Dulay, and my girl friend I have managed to realize how much it means to me to accomplish my goal of becoming an Elementary Teacher. I want to give back what many people have been giving me: a helping hand.

I believe ordinary people have the power to impact other people’s lives, and I want to become one of those ordinary people in many children’s lives.