My name is Maria Martinez, I am a student hailing from the small and warm city of Colima, nestled on the Pacific side of Mexico. Recently, I graduated from Lester B. Pearson United World College of the Pacific, also known as Pearson, in Victoria, Canada. I am really excited to be attending Lewis & Clark College this fall.
When I think about my time at Pearson, I have to admit that I never expected to find myself in such an isolated place, where the nearest town was a 40-minute bus ride away, and a 3-hour walk if you were unlucky enough to miss the last bus. Coming from a small yet full city, living surrounded by forests that I used to admire in movies as a kid felt like a mix of a dream and a nightmare. I remember that one of my favorite activities at the college was to sit on the rocks beside the water with my friends as we watched the tide coming in and had deep conversations. Now, even after two years, the enchanting Pacific Northwest, with its rugged beauty, still manages to both scare and inspire me. It has become the main source of my creativity and imagination.
Attending a UWC, as my fellow classmates would agree, was a rollercoaster of emotions and experiences. From engaging in exciting conversations in class and the dining hall to having fun and acting silly with my roommates and friends, my journey at Pearson was something that completely changed my life. I learned so many things from the people I met there, like my interest in art as a means for social change (for example the Latin American Trova movement), appreciation for managing difficult conversations, passion for literature, and my newly-discovered yet deep love for the ocean. However, the most significant thing that Pearson left in me was a profound sense of compassion and understanding. When life became challenging, I was met with empathy and understanding, which inspired me to extend the same kindness to every person I meet.
That being said, Lewis & Clark College seemed like the perfect fit for me when looking for colleges to keep pursuing my education; it had the strong social justice values that I resonate with as well as a tight-knitted community in the beauty of the Pacific Northwest. Moreover, I liked the freedom to explore different career paths that the college offered as well as the comprehensive financial aid that I was offered.
Academically, I have a keen interest in psychology, sociology, anthropology, economics, history, and the arts. These subjects allow me to delve into the intricacies of human behavior, cultures, and the stories that shape our world; which is “mi mole” as I would say in Spanish or something that I am always interested in. Therefore, I am planning to major in Psychology and pursuing a minor in Arts.
Outside of the classroom, my hobbies and interests revolve around reading, daydreaming, creative writing and music. A fun fact about me is that I am in love with everything related to coffee and cafés; there is something fascinating about the power of coffee and the atmosphere of coffee shops that truly captivates me. I am passionate about exploring different cafés, even if it means taking a two-hour drive just to indulge in the experience. I also like to travel, especially when improvised or “free-styled”, as having little expectations leads to happier experiences; some of the places that I have visited are El Salvador, Guatemala, Canada, and of course various parts of Mexico.