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Maria José Flórez García

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Maria José Flórez García was born and raised in Bucaromonga, Colombia. She grew up with her parents and old brothers, and all are avid tennis players. Her brother was her tennis instructor for a few years. On December 15, 2014 she came to the United States for her family, to study English, and in the hopes of earning a college scholarship.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License. Please contact Immigration History Research Center staff for permissions not covered by this Creative Commons license.

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Maria José Flórez Immigrant Stories Transcription
January 2015

“Maria José Flórez García”

Hi. My name is Maria José Flórez García. I am from Colombia. I was born in Bucaramanga city on March 16. My ethnicity is Latin. I grew up in Bucaramanga. My life was busy and focused on my tennis. When I was 8, my parents were playing in tennis tournaments and winning and I was with them all the time watching them, and working all the time to be the better. They are my inspiration.
I came to the United States on December 15, 2014, I came alone. I am in the United States to improve my English and study biology and looking a scholarship for my sport. I brought my tennis rackets with me because it remind me of my family and how much time I dedicated for my sport. I left my parents and my brother to follow my dreams of studying in Minnesota. When I think about my object or my treasure, I remember when my brother was my instructor and told me “You can do everything if you put your mind to.” We won one tournament together and two bracelets. When I play tennis I use that bracelet and my mind plays with my memories and I travel to my past. I remember when I was playing tennis for the first time with him. He is my inspiration too. All the time my parents were saying me “Echar pa’ delante” or “ Ay que guerrerarla”. In English it means “keep going with your way” and “Try to get it.” Because my parents taught me that you need to make the difference in person and your life. Everybody can do the same as you, but you can make something for yourself, you can overcome the obstacles in your life. Now when I am without my parents I think and remember the moments with them, but I am here and I know God has good things for me in the United States.