Diversity: My Perspective

As you may already know, I am from Puerto Rico. A territory of the United States since 1898, at that time we were a colony from Spain. Puerto Ricans are a mix of the native indigenous people of Puerto Rico, the Tainos, Africans, and the Spaniards, we are a mix. All my life I have seen myself as Puerto Rican, not Latino. Now that I am studying in Virginia Tech, I keep seeing myself as Puerto Rican, but now also a Latino. It is interesting as perspectives change.

My graduate program is composed of mostly internationals, for the last three years I have interacted with male and female colleagues from different parts of the world. I have grown immensely, not just from my studies but learning from their different point of views. We benefit from having people with different backgrounds, experiences, and knowledge. Do we have the same benefit in Puerto Rico were in my perspective we are homogeneous, racially speaking? Is race the color of the skin or your ethnic background?

Maybe my perspective is skewed given the way I was raised or the experiences I had while growing up. There is no single simple answer, but if we work together and build upon the experiences and background of different people. We surely could benefit from the best of everyone and keep improving as a nation, but most importantly as human beings.