Interview, Maria Vázquez Ramirez
Maria Vázquez Ramirez was born in 1967 in Rochester, New York. She was part of the first generation in her family to be born in the United States. When she was young, her father decided to move the family back to Puerto Rico for a few years. They would later move back to Rochester. She attended a bilingual school until sixth grade. At the time of this interview, she works as a second-grade bilingual teacher in the Rochester City School District and has done so for the past nineteen years.
In this interview, Maria Vázquez Ramirez discusses her family’s experiences, the importance of language within her life and family, and her experiences of the Latino community. She explains how there is a generational difference involving language and how there is a gap between the younger and older generations because of the lack of exposure. She also discusses bilingual education in Rochester and how dual-language programs allow her to make a deeper connection with her students through language and common culture.