Omaha World-Herald Explorer
Vanessa Chavez is a first generation American who has spent most of her life in Omaha, Nebraska. Her family is from Querétaro, Mexico, although a few of her relatives currently live in California.
“Even though I wasn’t born in Mexico, I still call myself Mexican,” Chavez said. “Because my parents are Mexican, and I’m proud of my heritage.”
Chavez is the middle child of three girls. Her older sister was about four when their parents moved to the U.S. Chavez’s parents chose to come to the U.S. rather than staying in Mexico because this country could offer more opportunities to their family.
“I’m very grateful,” Chavez said. “And I want to give back to them by working hard in school.”
Her school newspaper and being active in her community are two very important aspects in Chavez’s life. Chavez is a junior at Millard South, and has been a part of her school paper for the last two years. She is currently an editor. Her favorite part of newspaper is being able to inform her school’s staff and students on important issues.
Chavez is a member of the National Honor Society, and has spent a lot of time volunteering in her church, school and other parts of her community. On Thursdays, she tutors at an elementary school.
Chavez isn’t 100 percent sure if she sees a future for herself in journalism. As of now, she currently debating between going into to journalism or law.
“I want to see if I like journalism enough to pursue a career in it,” Chavez said. “I like to write, and newspaper has been a fun and great opportunity.”
If she chose to work in journalism, Chavez would be interested in investigative journalism or news coverage, but if she chose to work in law, her primary focus would either be environmental and human rights, or immigration.