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AMIS Voices: Miguel Ashley Hernandez Urbaneja

Updated: May 27, 2022

By: Carol Kleywegt

Have you ever wondered how a person moves to a completely different country and makes new connections? What does it feel like in the process? What new things are most challenging?

AMIS Voices is a profile of students that have participated in AMIS Atlanta. We asked international students to share their biggest successes and challenges in traveling, studying, and living in the United States.

AMIS Voices: Miguel Ashley Hernandez Urbaneja

University Affiliation: Fulbright scholar living in Atlanta attending Georgia State University. Miguel is pursuing a Master’s degree in Digital Media Strategies at Georgia State University.

City of Origin: Caracas, Venezuela

AMIS Participant since 2021. Currently serves as the AMIS Communications Coordinator.

Miguel offered his story in an interview with AMIS blog contributor Carol Kleywegt:

Carol: Miguel, can you share your story of where you are from and some unique things about your culture?

Miguel: I am very proud to be from Caracas, the capital of Venezuela. Caracas is a city where many important people were born like Simon Bolivar, known as the Liberator of America; and our national hero, Francisco Miranda, who participated in the American Revolutionary War. Our most popular food dish is arepas. We love arepas!

Venezuela is next to Colombia and Brazil and faces the Caribbean Sea and it has an impressive climate. Its location in the northern part, means we serve as the door to South America. If you want to visit South America, Venezuela is the right place.

Carol: Thanks, Miguel. Can you share a little about your family in Venezuela? Can you tell us how things have been going since the pandemic?

Miguel: Yes, of course, I miss my family and I haven't had the opportunity to visit Venezuela yet because of the political crisis. I left my country in 2017 because of the political and economic crisis Venezuela was in. However, I lived with my mom in Peru for almost two years.

All my family is in Venezuela now including my mom. I have five siblings, four sisters and one brother, who are older than me. I have four nieces and a nephew too.

Carol: What was your journey like to live in Atlanta?

Miguel: When I came to the States in January 2020, I lived in Arkansas for almost a year because I took an English course at the University of Arkansas. I moved to Atlanta in January 2021.

When I came to this city, I must confess, I was a little bit afraid because I didn't have any friends. I didn't know anything about the city, only the airport. I think that the first month here was challenging because I was alone. It was a little bit difficult for me.

However, I remember my first AMIS event during that time. It was the Martin Luther King walk. At this event, I met, Irene Wong. We started to talk about AMIS and about everything. At that moment I started to be involved with AMIS.