Ana Muñoz Molina

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Ana Muñoz Molina is a student at UNC Chapel Hill from Cuba who shares her experience emigrating to the United States and her role within the Latino community in Chapel Hill and Miami, where she lives with her family. Ana discusses her family’s struggles to make ends meet in Cuba and discusses the challenges she faces to feel integrated within the university’s Hispanic community, made up mostly of first-generation Americans whose experiences differ from the conditions in which she was brought up both in Miami and under the Cuban authoritarian regime. While Ana is one of over a million people of Cuban heritage living in the Miami area and her experiences may be commonplace in south Florida, Ana shares the challenges of connecting to her culture in a university environment. She also provides advice for those in similar situations: coming to the United States, being surrounded by one’s own culture, and leaving that for a journey of independence and academic growth.




[00:00:03] Anthony Ciano: Hello, my name is Anthony Ciano and today I am here with Ana Munoz Molina in Dey Hall on UNC Chapel Hill's campus. Today is April 18, 2023. And the time is 3:48 PM. So, to start, Ana, would you be able to share a little bit about yourself and how you came to North Carolina?

[00:00:23] Ana Muñoz Molina: Yes. So, I was born and raised in Cuba until I was eight years old. I come from a family who was very into the medical industry. My Grandpa was a doctor, mom is a nurse, Dad was a pharmacist. And around that age, me and my family decided that we were going to emigrate to the United States. And we actually migrated to Florida, Miami, Florida, where I did my elementary years, my middle school, high school. And at the time that it was time for college, I did community college in Miami for two years, and I decided to transfer to UNC in Chapel Hill.

[00:01:15] AC: And you're a junior this year?

[00:01:16] AMM: Yes. A junior majoring in biology, hopefully going into the pre-dental track.

[00:01:23] AC: Very cool. Um, so you said you were from Cuba, and you moved to the US when you were eight. So where- like where in Cuba are you from?

[00:01:29] AMM: So, I was born in Camagüey, Cuba. There, we lived with my grandparents, in a house around like four or five bedrooms in a very tight-knit community, and neighborhood, everyone knew each other. My family was extremely close. My cousins lived around, just a block away. So, we were very close. I've lived with my grandparents my whole life as far as my parents, my sister. But yeah, in Camagüey, Cuba.

[00:02:08] AC: Very cool. So, you moved when you were eight. You said that you studied here, you went to community college in Miami, and then now you came to UNC. So, I guess what I was wondering is what were some of the reasons why your family emigrated to the United States and how did the Cuban laws or policies impact your family's decision to come to the US?

[0002:34] AMM: Overall, I would say it was because of better opportunities. How I had mentioned before, my family was very into the medical fields and they did their years studying for this specific job or profession for them later to not be able to help anyone out due to a lack of materials or hospitals or clinics. Although they studied, they would not be provided economically to maintain the family. So, for example, my mother, although she was a nurse, who worked seven days a week, alongside my father, who was a pharmacist, they still had to go out in the streets of Cuba have of Camagüey and sell treats that they would make just to provide for our family when that shouldn't be, that's not ideal. So, it was essentially, I would say that they wanted to provide me and my sister with better opportunities, that is, professionally and future to have to be able to provide for their family better. And regarding the policies. I would say that after the dictatorship of Fidel Castro, everything went downhill, there was no food to be found. Professionals were not being paid enough to provide for their families. And so that's when my family decided that it was reason enough to emigrate to the United States.

[00:04:15] AC: Okay, that makes sense. So, I know that, like Fidel came into power in like the middle, like middle of the 20th century, and a lot of people left, like in those coming years after that. So, you've said that your family moved here when you were eight and you're 21 now?

[00:04:36] AMM: 20.

[00:04:36] AC: You're 20, so I guess why did your family like only decide to leave like 12 years ago? Why didn't your family come sooner? Like I know, like a lot of other Cuban people did.

[00:04:48] AMM: Yes, So there's various reasons. For example, when Fidel Castro first became president, I remember my grandma telling me the stories that she was extremely happy. That all his speeches seemed like they all made sense and that they were going to help the people of Cuba. Her and her family went on the streets to celebrate alongside all Cuban families. And so, it really took a turn when it wasn't going as planned. And when there was shortages of food, of material, of utilities, and that's when they really started thinking about what is happening, and what will happen in the future if it's gonna get better or worse. So, from there, I specifically remember my family getting together and at the time, I was only eight. So, I was extremely confused as to what was actually happening. And so, I remember them getting together and just discussing what they should do, if they change their whole life around, if they should migrate to a whole new country where the language is not known, where they barely know anyone, to provide a better future for our family. And so I do feel like the timing was the correct one, as things did get worse in Cuba, as well as it was good timing since my aunt at the time who lived in the United States, and a US citizen, managed to sort of sponsor us, where we would enter the United States with residency, almost, I would say, like six months into living here. So, we were provided with various help, financially, when we got to the United States. As well as my parents were given certain jobs, English classes. So, I do feel like my family picked the right time, knowing where things were sort of going to go futuristic in Cuba in the island, as well as, when was the right time for us to get here, knowing that we were gonna be helped by the government, the US government.

[00:07:13] AC: Were your parents able to like work in the same sort of jobs that they did, like in Cuba?

[00:07:19] AMM: So, definitely not when they got here. It's very, very difficult, especially the language barrier, kept them from doing this right away. But for example, my mother started as a medical assistant, she worked her way up, and studied for the nursing boards. And eventually, in two to three years, I want to say, did manage to get her nursing license, in the United States. So currently, she is working as a nurse and is very happy with her job. However, my father, on the other hand, who was a pharmacist in Cuba, did not think that it was the right time, or the right choice to do all that studying, and decided that he was going to work various jobs. Right now, he does still work in the medical field. But he's more towards insurance and clinics, and that sort of industry instead of pharmaceutical.

[00:08:21] AC: So, I know that you talked about like, the economic challenges that your family faced while living in Cuba. Do you think that like the embargo, or like “el bloqueo” has impacted? I guess, like, has that do you think had an impact on like, the Cuban economy?

[00:08:39] AMM: So, um, when I was in Cuba, just to share a small story, I was very confused. I lived a good- I had a good childhood. Just because my parents, my family overall, made a really- hid it really well that the island wasn't doing well, economically. So, I would always have food on a plate. I would always have toys to play with. But little did I know that my family, my parents specifically, would stop eating so I could. Or that my family, my parents had to work an extra shift for that one toy. So as an eight-year-old, I was really confused when we made the move. And about the embargo, I would now, knowing more about the situation in Cuba and being more active about being an immigrant and seeing and facing what's currently happening with Cubans right now, I would say it's hard. Because yes, I understand the embargo but at the same time those people in Cuba, it's hard to really, how do I say this, like it's hard to see what they live day by day because there's nothing. So sometimes the only thing that they could get, the only sort of food that they could obtain, is from family that they have over at the United States. So, let's say that that is cut off, I will not know how it would feel to go hungry at night for children to not have food, and so on.

[00:0:19] AC: So, well, thank you for sharing that. Besides like, the lack of economic opportunities that your family experienced while living in Cuba, do you think like, how did the government's oppression, or how did the government of Cuba specifically impact your family? Do you ever experience any- I guess like, does your family have any experience- negative or positive experiences with the government?

[00:10:52] AMM: I don't recall any negative experiences. We never had some sort of business that they took away, or, or any, thankfully, none of us had any tragedy within the family that occurred. But I do feel like as a child, even when I didn't know much, I did experience some trauma. For example, a short story that I want to share is that in Cuba, as a kid, we were always told that you can't say the word "libtertad" out loud, which is freedom in Spanish. Since Cuba does not have rights, you couldn't just be in the streets asking for freedom. You would get- you would have this trauma that you would get taken away from your family arrested, shot at. So, I specifically remember arriving from Cuba in the Miami Airport. And the first thing I asked my mother was, Mom, could I say the word "libertad" here? And my mom just started crying. I was extremely confused as an eight-yearold. I was like, okay. But I do feel like it always gives us some trauma. Yes, the government did give me some trauma, for sure.

[00:12:13] AC: Have you had the opportunity to go back to visit Cuba? Or like do you want to?

[0012:20] AMM: Yes, so I do have basically all my mom's side still in Cuba. Two little cousins, actually. So, I did get the opportunity to visit once. However, it is extremely expensive for us born in Cuba to go and visit it. I would have to get a Cuban passport which is over $500 plus a ticket, which could easily cost you from $400, $300. So, all the expenses just for one trip to Cuba, plus all the money that you have to give your family to help them out, and friends. So, I've only been able to go back once. And I really felt how different it was, I felt sorry, for my family there. I saw how my little cousins would cry, because all they wanted to do is eat a plate of spaghetti when there wasn't any. So yes, I went back, but it was also very emotional. I saw friends that I had gone to school with. And I would explain to them what a mall was, for example, and they were just extremely confused by it because they had- they can't even picture something like that. So yeah, I did have the chance to go back. I would like to go back. However, I would like it even more for my family to come here instead.

[00:13:47] AC: How do you feel when Americans talk about Cuba? Like, I guess, you know, people in the United States have their own opinions about Cuba. Practically everyone here does have an opinion on it. But when you hear people talk about Cuba, saying it's the United States fault, for all the problems that are there, how does that make you feel? Or like what do you think when people like just like blame the United States for the problems?

[00:14:17] AMM: I highly disagree with them. I feel like Cuba's problems is Cuba's president and corrupt governments. The United States has actually, I would say, saved my life, as many other Cubans. It's the States was a place that you know us Cubans who were escaping oppression could come and live our- as you could say, American dreams. And I feel like blaming the United States for what is happening or what's happening is a mistake in my opinion. And if anything, sometimes they did even like help Cubans out, but that's just my opinion. I also feel like people who might be saying things about Cuba who haven't experienced living there or gone there aside the, the whole traveling just to see Havana which is the Capitol, should not be stating their opinion because they don't know what a life to life is for looking for food when there isn't any or providing for a family that they don't have over there.

[00:15:35] AC: Yeah, okay. Yeah, that makes sense. Do you feel like, I guess when you came, like, in North Carolina, when you tell people that you're Cuban, what do they think? Like? I mean, like, obviously, Miami, there are a lot of Cuban people. But in Chapel Hill, maybe not so much. So, you introduce yourself, you say, "Hi, I'm Ana. I'm from Cuba." What do people say?

[00:16:00] AMM: Yes, it's very, it's very cool. I would say like, it's nice to feel like they want to know more about you, like why you moved. They want to know your story, which I feel heard. Like, I really enjoy when I present myself as Cuban that I was born in Cuba and raised in Cuba, and they want to know more. I think it's very exciting. I really enjoy it. I really do. I you know, tell them I share a little bit about myself. Sometimes they're--. They don't know much about the government and what's happening. So, I like to share a little bit with them about the current situation. I feel like knowledge is always a good thing. And yeah, I really enjoy it. I enjoy when people ask me, oh, why did you migrate? Oh, that's very nice how's Cuba, like and even like to share a bit of knowledge with them.

[00:16:54] AC: Do you feel like your experiences- I actually, before I ask you this question? What like, what label? Do you like to use for yourself? When you're referred to? Like you being someone of Latin American descent? Like, do you say, do you tell people that you're Hispanic? Do you say that you're like Latina? Do you just say you're Cuban? Like, what?

[00:17:16] AMM: I typically go with Cuban just to be more specific. If not I, yeah, I use either Latina or Hispanic. I haven't I've never been really much into, "oh what am I." Or if you know, someone refers me to something that I might not be I'm not the type to really get offended, if not, maybe correct them, and share a little bit about myself with them so they understand better. But I mostly would say Cuban. For sure. Just because I like to get specific.

[00:17:50] AC: Yeah, that makes sense. So, I guess like, like speaking more broadly, do you feel like your experiences as an immigrant mirror the experiences of other Latinos in North Carolina?

[00:18:06] AMM: I feel like every immigrant or Latino is different just because everyone sort of has their own stories, their own immigrant story, their own personal struggles. Many people, for example, might have come from their home country, on a plane, or on a ship, or anything along those sorts. So, everyone has or even maybe have different reasons. But I do feel like we're sort of like a community and somehow share the same experiences, like we could understand each other more, just because we relate to other people's stories. You know, at the end of the day, I feel like most of us emigrate for a better future or to escape dictatorship. And that passion for a country or our different cultures sort of like come together and we sort of know what we're feeling emotionally and physically about what's going on back home. So yes, I do feel like we're all different, and we have different experiences. But I do at the end of the day feel like my story is very relatable to other immigrants here, or Latinos in North Carolina.

[00:19:27] AC: So, like, obviously, Miami, a lot of the people that live there are Cuban or Venezuelan or Nicaraguan, and I guess they have similar situations back in their home countries, while a lot of the immigrants who come to North Carolina are from Central America, and maybe they come due to, I guess, more economic reasons rather than political. Do you feel like you've noted that difference like, do you feel like it's harder to connect with, with Latinos here versus in Miami, when they've really like, you know, a lot of them have even come from the same country that you have? What do you think about that?

[00:20:13] AMM: I do, I really do. For example, Miami, there's a really, really big percentage of Cubans, where you just spot them in the street. And you know, they're Cuba. You might even actually know them. So, it's very funny. You in Miami, you're just another Cuban or another, Nicaraguan, or Venezuelan. It is very different, Miami, immigrants, I guess, to North Carolina. And I do feel some sort of, you know, besides our differences, some sort of, how could I say this, connection as well. Just because most immigrants, I'd like to say from Miami, have recently moved from Miami, whereas immigrants, I guess, from North Carolina, are- their parents are immigrants not really themselves. So yes, they like to share their culture proudly, and so on. But they lived it through their parents and their parents' struggles. Whereas I feel like Miami, since it's currently happening right here right now, it's very sudden, and everyone knows that it's more impacting since you just moved from another country. That also could be however, because Chapel Hill, I feel like it's very university town, location. So, you're gonna see students from a lot of places, from different backgrounds, whose parents might have migrated instead of them. Whereas Miami is a really, really big city with a lot, a lot of Latin Americans, Latins. So, I do feel it's impacted by location, as well as heritage. Yeah.

[00:22:27] AC: Would you say that the transition from living in Cuba to Miami was challenging, or very different?

[00:22:35] AMM: Yes, definitely. So, I was- so I was eight, right in Cuba, and sort of to get, like, life, I guess, figure it out, my father left first to the United States. Six months prior to when me my mom and my sister moved. And I was extremely confused. One day, my dad was gone and I was like, really confused by the situation. My family always tried to protect, like, protect me from the scenario. So, I wasn't told much. I was told that I was gonna see him very soon, that he's helping us out. But again, really, really confused. I was just going to school one day, came back and he wasn't there. I did, however, of course get to say goodbye. But it was just a really confusing situation for an eight-year-old. When we got here, that my dad was all settled, we moved in with my aunt and uncle who thankfully accepted us into their home with open arms. I started school, and I started school in the late like late third grade, I like to say, where everyone was taken already. The FCAT I think I believe there was called, I was an ESOL. I was the smallest tiniest little girl on ESOL. And I didn't know anything. All I knew is that whenever a teacher would ask me a question, or there was some sort of quiz or exam, I would cry. The only thing I would do was cry, just because of how frustrated I was to not know the language, the culture, what was happening around me. It was a very difficult time I would come home with panic attacks, explaining to my mom that I did not want to do it anymore. I wanted to go back. That where was I? I really did not like it at first. It was a really hard transition for a kid. And thankfully, that opinion has changed now. I would- I love it here. I loved Miami and the States. But yeah, at the beginning, it was definitely rough. And I feel like it's a story that many people we'll share at first having not knowing the culture or anyone or the language. But you get used to it, you get used to it one day at a time. I remember, I learned English one day to from one day to another, I don't even remember how. I remember though, how my mom would do little flashcards with pictures and names of cat for example, or dog. And little by little I learned, got used to it. School was better. Make some friends, which always helps and, yeah.

[00:25:37] AC: Very cool. So, I'd like to know a little bit, a little bit more about how you moved here. So, you said that you came on a plane and that your aunt and uncle sponsored you? Do you know how that process works? I guess like how did you like how were you able to come here? Because I know a lot of other immigrants, unfortunately, don't have that same experience.

[00:25:59] AMM: Yes. So, the reason why my uncle and aunt were here in the first place and could sponsor me was because back then in Cuba, they had like some I would say, raffle where citizens of Cuba would get randomly selected for residency in the United States. And thankfully, they both were really nice. So, they took their chance. I'm not sure what year this was. It might have even been before Fidel Castro came to govern. So, they left and they had made a life here, have been here for over 30, 40 years, I would like to say now. And when things got bad, since they were US citizens, they managed to sort of sponsor me on my family. And that process, I believe, is still going on today, but it's paused. Back then, when they sponsored us, it was a faster process, and was working more like continuous. And I believe it only took a couple of months, right after they put in like the request. And my father came six months after me, my family. I said, my mom and my sister came. And when we became US citizens, we sponsored our grandparents and our grandparents' parents sponsored other family that we have from our dad's side. And that's sort of how my family grew here in the United States. Basically, sponsor after sponsor, and I believe that once we arrived here, we did have some help from the government. So that was really beneficial for me and my family. Yeah.

[00:27:55] AC: So, it seems that you have a pretty big family. Now, like in the US, do you feel like- how would you compare Miami to Chapel Hill? Do you feel like it's hard to connect with, like your, like "Cubanidad" or "Latinidad" like living in Chapel Hill?

[00:28:16] AMM: Yes, um, I really, really had been having a hard time. Thankfully, though, I did transfer here with Miami students who were also from Cuba, Nicaragua. And I already knew some Cubans here, because we all went to the same community college in Miami. So that was really extremely helpful at the beginning, for sure. However, I don't feel like I have found like the right group of people at Chapel Hill. I do believe like, like, our community has a certain like sense of humor that maybe others here might not get along with or our personality. And so that's been extremely hard just to find my sort of people. But it is helpful that I do have some Cubans here from Miami, who have always like, kept the door open for whatever I needed, or help. And yeah,

[00:29:22] AC: Have you been able to, like meet people or connect with other people who aren't of like Cuban origin? Or do you feel like you're mostly like around other people from Miami?

[00:29:34] AMM: So, I did try, I think it was my first semester, very first or second week that this certain organization did like a meeting and it was mostly Hispanics so I was like, "Oh this is very, very nice. I'm gonna go and I'm gonna meet people. However. I was the only Cuban. And most people if not all, spoke Spanish- spoke sorry, English. I didn't feel very, I'm not gonna say welcomed, but very, I don't know, not really accepted just because most of them already had their community from their certain country, I believe it was Mexico. So, after that, I was like, "okay, I gave it a try." But I sort of always kept going back to the Cuban people that I knew here. Which I feel like I do connect more with.

[00:30:42] AC: Um, what advice? Like, I mean, I guess, like, I this can be a two-part question. So what advice would you give? Like, first off, what advice would you give somebody from Cuba coming to the United States?

[00:30:59] AMM: Okay, um, it depends. Where would they be arriving? What states like-

[00:31:05] AC: Let's say they go to Miami.

[00:31:06] AMM: Okay! I feel like Miami is a very safe place to arrive at, just because you basically speak more Spanish than English on your day-to-day. And you will know many people, it's very unlikely that you won't just because so many people have migrated. So, I do feel like you're gonna get adjusted well, you're gonna feel welcome into a community, you're gonna have people loving you every step of the way and helping you out. So, I do feel like Miami is the right place. Or at least one of them, where a Cuban could come with not knowing any language, not being as, I guess, well educated, and so on to really feel like they could make something of themselves and a future that is with the right people surrounding them.

[00:32:05] AC: Now, what advice would you give someone coming from like, Miami? Like, look, so you, you really grew up in Miami after you moved to Cuba or after you moved from Cuba. And now you're going to this new state with a new sort of demography, new people. If you were to- if someone were to ask you, what advice would you give to that person?

[00:32:30] AMM: I would admire them. I feel like one of the reasons why I decided to make the move was because I wanted a change. I was so used to my day-to-day Miami. I felt like I wasn't unique enough, just because everyone around me was Cuban, and was pursuing the same dream. I wanted to change sort of myself, like put myself not in like such a comfort zone, I wanted to get out of that comfort zone that Miami was for me. And that's essentially why I made that big change of moving from Miami to North Carolina to study. The environment was very different. I like the weather. And I was like, I think if I don't do it, now, I'm not gonna do it. And the advice that I would give that person besides telling them that they're brave, because it is a very hard decision. I feel like Hispanics are very tight with their families. And so that big move from your family is extremely emotionally draining at first. But besides telling them that they're brave, basically telling them as well that to get out there to meet people in class, talk to them. Go to club meetings, even if they're not your thing at first. If you keep trying and keep trying, I'm sure you will find the right one with the right community of people where you will feel welcome, accepted, where you could express your Cuban-ness and Hispanic descent and even share with people more about your country and why you moved. So, I think that would be my main advice.

[00:34:15] AC: Do you feel like you've grown from the transition from Miami to North Carolina?

[00:34:21] AMM: Yes, definitely. Since I've said before my family, my Cuban family, is very tightly sort of together. We do everything together. If there's a party happening, we're all going. If- we celebrate all holidays together, we eat dinner together all at one table every day at a certain time. So, I've definitely feel like I've become more independent for sure. I- since in Miami I live with both my grandma's and our mom, for example that love to cook. When my mom is stressed, the only thing that will relax her is cooking. So I- before coming here, I didn't know how to fry an egg, literally. So definitely a lot of things have changed. I feel like I've become more independent as a student, as well as a woman growing up in my 20s. So, I do feel like that's another reason why I made the move, I wanted to grow. And I felt like if I stayed at my house in Miami, with my very close family- that I feel like if I would have stayed in Miami that I would not have had the chance to experience American culture in a specific way as the one that I do in UNC. So, I do feel like this change, this move between states, especially as a student like me, was not only practical, but necessary.

[00:36:01] AC: Do you ever want to go back to Miami, like after you graduate? Do you see yourself there and like around your culture in the future?

[00:36:09] AMM: So, since I've mentioned that, I am planning to go into dental school, I don't mind where. I'm very open to moving around for dental school. However, I do feel like I've talked with friends and family about this, that Miami is home, and where I am just more comfortable with. So, I do feel like in the long run, where I want to create a family and experience life with in would be Miami at the end of the day. Yeah.

[00:36:49] AC: If you were to have stayed- So obviously, like Miami and Cuba are different in many different ways. But you know, do you feel like, if you were to have stayed in Cuba, how would your life be different now?

[00:37:05] AMM: I feel like it would have been extremely different. Not only professionally, but me as a person, I feel like I would not have been able to pursue my passion of becoming a dentist just because I saw how my parents struggled, my grandpa, my whole family essentially struggled as medical professionals. So, I do feel like I would have had to let go of that dream of becoming a dental professional. And instead, I would have probably joined the tourist industry, which pays people more than being a medical professional, it sounds crazy, but it's very realistic. Also, I feel like I would have a very unstable and stressful life, just because you don't know when your next plate of food- where it's going to come from or if you're going to find it. And that's just more stress than a human being with rights or in a country that the government should take care of, if not providing you with the essentials for you to make a living. So I- in overall I feel like one, I would have to stop pursuing my dream professionally. And two, it would just be a very stressful life. I would not be living to enjoy it. On top of that, there's no traveling. The only traveling you could do is in Cuba. So, there will be no going to Europe, going to the States, going all around the world if you wanted to just to visit. one because there's no money, and the other because Cuba doesn't allow you to.

[00:38:49] AC: So, you talk about the struggles that you feel like you would face if you had stayed in Cuba. What is life like for your family now in Cuba, like what did they do to manage?

[00:39:00] AMM: Yes, currently, the family that I have most in Cuba is my Mom's side. And that includes mostly her brother, so my uncle, his wife, and my two little cousins that are, I would say around the age of like- one is six years old and the other one is like 11. And I see their struggles, and I see how horrific it is. So, my mom thankfully provides them with food when it's needed. Because they- although my uncle works-, he's a mechanic and his wife, I believe, does something in the tourist industry, they can't provide for themselves alone. They can't pay for their housing and they can't pay for their expenses from what they make. And so, my family, especially my mother, sends them food, monthly, as well as utilities, anything that they aren't able to find in Cuba, my mom sends them- sends it to them. However, it's way more expensive. It takes time to get there, it's not assured that they will get it. So, it's very unstable, an unstable sad life. My uncle is currently battling depression just because he sees that most of his friends and most of his family are gone. And they are waiting for the same thing that was done to me, my mom, my father, and my sister, so that sponsorship from us. However, since it's from brother to- from sister to brother, it does take longer. And since that program is currently on pause, it's been, I believe, like eight years and no response. So definitely a difficult time. However, it does make it a little easier that they have our help from the States. But it still doesn't make it okay, that they're struggling this much just to provide for their family and live on a day-to-day basis[00:41:16] AC: Well, we are almost out of time, but I just wanted to ask you what else- like what do you want people to know about Cuba? About you being from Cuba?

[00:41:26] AMM: Yes, I want the people to know, even within this interview that even though there's a lot of struggles with the economy, with the government, dictatorship, and the people suffering, that we are a very rich culture island and that our identity is known. That the people are just very good people that care about each other. I remember how back when I was over there living, if any neighbor needed something, they will stop what they're doing just to help that other person. So, we are a very likeable people. Love to just talk, be communicative and help out. And I feel like if it's something that you should take from this interview, is to learn a little bit more about Cuba and how you could help and just know that its culture really is something that no other island could have. And yeah.

[00:42:30] AC: Well, thank you very much, Ana, for sharing your story with me today. And good luck with the rest of the semester.

[00:42:36] AMM: Thank you so much for having me.

Transcribed by: Anthony Ciano