Dr. Carlos Campo is President of Ashland University and founder of the Faith & Education Coalition-NHCLC. He was first in his family to attend college, and he recently shared some of his personal story at the 2016 Preparate` conference “Educating Latinos for the Future of America.”
Please feel free to share Dr. Campo’s inspiring story with parents and students on Education Sunday.
Neither one of my parents graduated high school. My father was a musician and my mother a singer. It was a vibrant, exciting, very different life. I didn't know how different it was until I realized everyone didn’t have talented singers, actors, and performers visiting their homes!
It was a vibrant home, but the odds were against me when it came to high school graduation. What I had in my favor, however, were parents who set high expectations for my success. My parents made me believe I could do it, that all things are possible and that education would be in my future.
My dad was probably a lot like your parents or grandparents in that he felt it was his duty to assimilate in a specific way: language. He saw that English was the language of power, the language of commerce. He felt that for us to succeed, we had to assimilate and invest ourselves in the English language. And so I did.
I was that young kid, like many first- or second-generation Latinos, sitting in the classroom thinking, My name is Carlos Campos" A Latino name was a gift from my father,, but I didn't feel like Carlos Campos. My facility with the Spanish language wasn't great. I didn't have my father's beautiful dark skin, the calor de café con leche. I felt if I could just disappear into the broader American culture and divest ...1
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