Amanda Ramirez

Amanda Ramirez

Name: Amanda Victoria Ramirez
Age: 23
Major: Mexican American Studies and English
Hometown: Zapata, Texas 

Besides having grown up watching my Tia Cristina become the first in our family to attend and graduate college with a BA from what was then UTPA, I chose UTRGV because of its location. This campus allowed me to be on my own while still being close to family and friends.

What made you decide on your current major?
I have always had a passion for English and was lucky enough to have a few educators in my life who nourished my love for reading and my talents in writing. I have to thank Ms. Gaby Montes, Ms. Monica Vela and Mrs. Christina Garza; their amazing teaching impacted and inspired me to pursue teaching after graduation. I stumbled upon an Intro to Mexican American Studies course where I first read Gloria Anzaldua and wrote my first testimonio (testimony). I learned about the history that often gets erased and was taught the importance of representation. As a future educator, I plan to push for culturally relevant and diverse literature. Taking MAS courses still continues to contribute to my personal and scholarly growth.

What do you like most about UTRGV?
I love working on campus. Before my job at the Student Union I was hardly active on campus and would never participate in any events, but working there has shown me how amazing and fun it can be to get involved at the university. I've met a lot of great people because of it.

What are some of your favorite study spots on campus?
I really enjoy studying and doing work at the STAC building.

What does being a Vaquero mean to you?
It means being proud of who I am and where I come from.   

What opportunities has UTRGV helped you find throughout your community?
As a member of the student organization Women Artistically Kollecting Experiencias- Unidas Prosperando (WAKE-UP) I was able to attend and present my work and poetry at several conferences, as well as meet several other poets and writers. Being a part of such an amazing organization, I was able to fulfill my dream of performing my poetry. I owe a lot of my growth as a person, performer and writer to that organization. My heart holds a special place for the people I met through it and performed with.

What are a few of your favorite books?
One of my very favorite books is a collection of short stories by Anel I. Flores called "Empanada: A Lesbiana Story en Probaditas.” As a queer chicanx person myself, reading this book meant a lot; representation matters. Another one of my favorites is "The House on Mango Street" by Sandra Cisneros. I really enjoy short stories.

What’s in your playlist right now?
Honestly, it’s a big mix of Paramore, Kumbia Kings and Hamilton. Any of my friends or coworkers can attest to that. I love all types of music, but this playlist is my current mood.