Name: Ana Maria Vasconez Carrera-Andrade
What is something about your country that others may not know?
Ecuador is a very diverse country. Besides being at the center of the world, Ecuador is a the country with the most biodiverse flora and fauna. Ecuador is the owner of the Galápagos Islands.
Is there a cultural custom about your country you like most?
Yes, we celebrate festivities like Christmas in a very particular and happy way. The nine days before Christmas we pray to baby Jesus and sing songs. The night of Christmas Eve we open gifts. Also, on New Year’s Eve, we burn a big doll that represents a bad character (ie. politician, someone who’s has been infamous in the news) along with many bad happenings of the past year, so we can bring a new year of health and happiness.
What challenges did you face entering the USA?
A lot of people like to think that every Spanish-speaking country in Latin America is Mexico. Upon being asked where I came from, when saying Ecuador, people would ask me where in Mexico it was.
What do you miss most about your country?
I miss the food, the landscapes, but most importantly, my family.
What do you like most about the USA?
I like that I have been given an opportunity to succeed. Setting aside the sociological and political matters that surround the international perspective of the USA, the States will still open the door to people who are willing to work hard to succeed. I never thought I would’ve said this myself, but I feel like a true American, thanks to the opportunities and doors that the country has opened to me.