Andrés and Alejandra Tovar

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Andrés and Alejandra Tovar

Bailey Morris

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Andrés and Alejandra (senior and freshman respectively), are siblings at Timpview High. With the future ahead and life in Colombia behind them, they share their perspectives to their family’s story.

“I was born in Colombia, I moved here a year ago.” Andrés says. “ My dad didn’t really want to move here cause he’s all Colombian and all about Colombia. Not that I’m not, I mean, I love my country, I just realized that you have more opportunities here.” After waiting 13 years for visas, their family finally moved to Provo. The move, however, was not the easiest.

“We were living very well back in Colombia, we had two houses, and cars. But it was my mom’s dream to move here.” Andrés says that they could really do anything they wanted back then, go to the movies, eat at nice restaurants, or go to the stadium. Expenses were not an issue. However, the day they got their visas both Andrés and Alejandra’s parents found out they had been fired. Despite the difficult circumstances, their family felt peace. “Something wanted us here, if not then that wouldn’t have happened,” Andrés says.

Alejandra says their family is moving back to Colombia in a few years, but sometimes worries about going back, especially with the current state of their country. Colombia receives large amounts of legal and illegal economic immigration and refugee outflows. “I’ll finish high school and then I’ll move back. Sometimes I want to go back but sometimes I don’t, but thinking of the situation now in Colombia, I don’t want to go. One of the reasons I have to be in school is because I want a better future for myself and I’m not thinking about me, but if I have children I’m gonna give them a good life. And because of my parents too. They always want me to be better in everything.” Although Alejandra would sometimes rather stay in Provo, she wants to be near her parents, and the sacrifice might just be worth it.

Andrés, however, would be 18 and able to decide whether he wants to go back to Colombia with his family or stay in Provo.

“It’s not in my plans, I want to stay here. I have so many opportunities here, I’m willing to give up being close to my family to build a future life here. A good one, one with opportunities, things you don’t have back in Colombia. I’ve already made up my mind. Plus, here I have the opportunity to play soccer for a university. I have the opportunity to get scholarships and to get a good job and get a better life with the environment I like, which is the one found here in Provo,” Andres said. He says that although they had more than enough in Colombia, learning to live with less has helped him focus more on school and making the best future for himself.

Andrés’s last words of advice to any Timpview student would be: “Not all Latinos are Mexicans.”