About Me

About Me

My interest in history is definitely a product of my lifestyle. My father’s career in the State Department made it so that we moved to a new place every two to three years and because of that I was exposed to different nation’s culture and history. As a child, learning about history was like listening to a story, and I think that’s why history has always been a passion of mine. I learned about those place’s histories and growing older I knew I wanted to major in history. I always thought it was important to study history because it helps us understand why things are they way they are, as well as gives us the opportunity to learn from mistakes made in the past. Currently, I am leaning towards American Studies and am interested in migration throughout North America. I believe there is a lot about the United States’ history we as historians are responsible for discovering and preserving, and by doing so we can accurately portray the truth of the past and learn more about the nation and our own identities within it.

I was born in Kodiak, Alaska to an American father and Chilean mother in 1996. The next year my sister Carmen was born and the year after that we moved to Anchorage. In 1999 I was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes in April, and that November my second sister, Laura (Loli), was born.

My mother and I ca. 1999

After Loli was born my dad joined the Foreign Service State Department and we moved from Alaska to northern Virginia, then three months later we moved to Mexico City. I experienced a different culture other than my own for the first time. I started speaking, reading, and writing in spanish more frequently, and soon was fluent in english and spanish. During the middle of our post my mom got pregnant with my little brother, Patrick. As her due date neared we all went back to Alaska for two months so that my brother could be born in the United States. After Patrick was born my parents found out their new posts was in Switzerland.

Before Switzerland, our family moved back to Virginia for language training. We stayed in fairfax for about 9 months. During this time my parents would often take us to DC to visit museums and the national mall, which heightened my interest in history especially after visiting the Smithsonian Natural History Museum. I loved visiting the Smithsonian so much that my mom and dad would try to take me as often as they could.

In Switzerland I learned how to speak German and was quite fluent for a couple years even after we moved. During the two and a half years  we lived there I learned how to ice-skate, ski, go bouldering, and how to milk a cow! Looking back at my time in Switzerland, I remember how magical living there felt- waking up to a view of the alps, experiencing the swiss nature and food, and just the way life felt living there. After two and a half amazing years, my parents next post was in my mother’s homeland, Chile.

My family stayed in Chile for three years and we were there in 2010 when the 8.8 magnitude earthquake hit off the coast. Although most buildings in Chile are built on rollers to withstand its frequent shakes, much was destroyed on the coast due to tsunamis. School was closed for a few days to clean up the mess and make sure the structure was safe. Back at school, we were still experiencing after shock waves. That Thursday, there was a strong shock wave, which ended up cancelling school for that week.

After Chile we were assigned to Tijuana, Mexico. I knew Tijuana didn’t have the best reputation, and my mother was worried about us living there. After three months we moved twenty minutes across the border to San Diego. Living in California was a wonderful experience. The beaches were so close and the nature and weather were always beautiful, it was truly a wonderful place to live. I began my freshman year of highschool and stayed until after my junior year in 2014.

That summer we moved to Falls Church Virginia where I graduated at George Mason High School in 2015. My senior year I wasn’t looking for anything specific in a college. I was still unsure about what I wanted to do career wise, but knew that I wanted to stay in state and study history. So I thought, why not the University of Mary Washington? My grandmother attended UMW many years ago when it was an all girls school, and I knew it had one of the prettiest campuses. Although I wasn’t that picky about what college I attended, I’m glad that I chose to come here. The teachers and students are helpful and friendly, classes are interesting and challenging, and campus is beautiful. While I still am unsure about what my plans are for after college, I am hoping to be able to use what I have learned about being a historian on personal projects, such as creating a family tree of my father’s side.

Family photo at the White House after my graduation in 2015