The University of California Merced has an intimate yet growing campus. Moreover, what makes our UC stand out from the rest is our diversity. According to (UCM Fast Facts) UC Merced is the most diverse campus.”
Therefore though all the different cultures, college is a true journey of finding out and reflecting your personal heritage. I prefer to define my personal heritage in three sub contexts: ethnicity, family, and dwelling.
My ethnicity is the foundation to my personal heritage. I classify my ethnicity as being a Filipina. However, I usually just say that to make conversations easier. If I were to give all specific details I would also say I have a vast Spanish ethnicity with small hints of Chinese, and even German. Ethnicity gives me a sense of self and ancestry, but family is what brings culture and sense of self together.
My family is what molded my personal heritage. My cousins, brother, and I are first generation Americans. Our parents were born and raised in the Philippines, then migrated
to America in the 70s. My family instilled culture through Filipino / Spanish food, language (Tagalog / Spanish), and oral traditions. Being surrounded with an entire family that shared the same culture gave form to my personal heritage. However, what makes my personal heritage distinct from my family is where I was born and raised.
I believe living in America gave my unique molding to my personal heritage. From freedom of speech, then to freedom of religion, and even freedom to equal justice; unlike other counties, America enables freedom. I believe these principles helped many, and personally, enabled me to explore life and express who I really am. What’s better than living in America is living in California. And what’s optimal is living in the Bay Area. Well, I guess many can argue against that, but living in the diverse Bay Area opened many doors to optimism. The streets of the city give off a laid back yet sophisticated vibe through the mix of street performers and highly respected business workers. While on the other hand the suburbs are less chaotic and emit serenity and a sense of home.
My sense of style, choice of language, and overall personality would not be the same if I lived somewhere else. While ethnicity and family made me a part of culture, living in America made me different from the pact.
We all have our own personal heritage. I believe my personal heritage is held together by my ethnicity, molded by my family’s culture, and made distinct by where I was born and raised. I’ve learned a great amount of myself here at the University of California, Merced and can’t wait to figure out what else is in store for me the last couple of years I spend here.