-Patricia Veliz Macal

Tears came to my eyes, they would not stop. I really tried but I could not stop them.

I remember feeling the same emotion when I left her in kindergarten at Winter Gardens school in East Los Angeles. But on this day, we were at the University of Oregon at Eugene for my daughter’s interview prior to admission to doctorate program. It is the highest academic degree.

Another memory suddenly came to me. I recalled when I arrived in this country in 1990 with only two suitcases and two children. Carla was three and Rudik was only one year.

Now in April 2018, I am taking a journey into my past as an immigrant, as a single mother, and as a woman. My route has had ups and downs, some very painful and others that very satisfying. I have traveled my life’s path with many people, especially with my two children. Yes, I am a proud mother, a blessed woman. Rudik earned his master’s degree in film and arts from UCLA (University of California at Los Angeles) Carla holds a master’s degree in Social Work from USC (University of Southern California)

I want to congratulate “La Carlita”

My heart beats with satisfaction for many reason, especially because I am sure that everything Carla learns she will share. Her knowledge will open doors for other immigrants and for other WOMEN to be encouraged to become doctors in different fields of education. Her generosity, her point of view and her actions for a better world will bear fruit.

I can see the future and very soon I will say: “Mija la Doctora” May God bless your steps, and may you always remain the woman, the one of the free spirit, with the hearts full of love. Thanks to our ancestors, our family, and our friends for their words of encouragement, support and for being present in our lives.