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Cierra Skyers

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Cierra Skyers came to the United States from Canada in 2012 to pursue college soccer opportunities. She has formed many relationships in the US and is planning to stay and become an educator. She feels that it is important to clarify misconceptions about Canadians and to give a foreigner's perspective on American culture.

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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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Cierra. Cheyenne. Skyers. The all-conference, all-region, all-academic award winning soccer star with proud roots from Toronto, Canada. Cierra immigrated from Canada in 2012 to pursue soccer opportunities in the States. While living in the United States, she has had some unexpected experiences. When asked about the first things she noticed when moving to America, she mentions all of the misconceptions that Americans had about Canada. So many people had so many inaccurate assumptions. Cierra also immediately noticed that living in the south alone, was very different. The biggest transitions were the accents, seeing the confederate flag in every direction she looked, and the overwhelming presence of guns and weapons. Upon arriving, Skyers described how she was approached with personal questions as if they were public advertisements and was shocked by how outspoken everyone was. Before coming to America, she had only every seen the confederate flag in textbooks and only ever seen a firearm on the hip of a police officer. She discussed how a girl at work had pepper spray on her keychain, and that came as a big shock to her. “Weapons are not that prevalent in Canada, so it was a shock to see them so socially accepted,” states Skyers.

She has been in the United Stated for going on 6 years, and plans to stay as long as her Visa gets approved. She has formed many relationships in America and plans to continue those relationships and seek a teaching opportunity in the States. She knows that the American dollar is worth more, so staying the United States to work just makes sense for her. While she loves America, her mom, dad, and brother still live in Toronto and she has an extremely close relationship with them. Not only has it made it difficult that they are so physically far from each other, but she has also been hit with the reality that shipping anything across the border is even more expensive than normal. Cierra is still extremely close with her family, and is counting down the days until they get to come to her graduate school graduation in May of 2019.

When asked what she would say to someone who is befriending an immigrant on the “dos and don’ts” what not to say, she states “Educate yourselves. Some of the most offensive comments I have received have been simply from a lack of knowledge about my culture and where I am from. People who aren’t from here work really hard to get a visa and legally be here, so that should be respected in itself. America claims to be very welcoming, but I have been in clear instances where they are not.” If this story should teach anything, it is that just because we are not far from another country, that is physically far away, that does not mean our cultures are not drastically different. The little things that she points out are things that most Americans see as normal and just a part of our daily lives. Not that the American culture is any less than any other, but some of the significant things that she noticed should work as a wake-up signal to how the United States is viewed form the outside.