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Decisiones, decisiones…

August, 2010, it was finally here, the beginning of what should be the last year before I graduate with a Bachelor’s degree. My case is solid, and assuming I take that one year’s worth of courses, there’s no way I’d have to stay in school any longer for that degree.

September, 2010, after minor disturbances I was two weeks into school, and all of sudden I felt the one year itch. No, not the marriage kind, but the “Keyla academic” type. During the past four years of my educational life, when I get to that last year I -almost robotically- have a change of heart and proceed to change my major accordingly. These “detours” have included Nursing, Anthropology, Biology, Sociology, and General Psychology degrees respectively.

While the logic behind the “curse of decision making” may be as simple as “Keyla no sabe lo que quiere,” I can assure you, it’s not that simple; I know what I want… for the most part. So I have finally identified it as an inability to make life-altering decisions when it comes to academia. *Keyla pauses for a second with enlightenment*

By this point you may be wondering what all this has to do with you— Well, a lot! Especially if 1) You were raised in a strict household, and/or 2) You are an authority figure enforcing a strict upbringing. As Latin@s-particularly females, many of us can attest to stern rearing. I happen to be a product of such a background, raised with parents who made every decision for me up until I was 18 (Seriously, every important and most minor decision). No, I’m not blaming my parents for my inability to make such a big decision and stick to it, and no, I cannot provide evidence that my theory is indisputable. However, I do see a correlation between a lifetime of no decision-making and suddenly having control of your life.

Con este problemita in mind, I wonder about a bigger issue, parenting styles and academic development. Should the child-rearing style in Hispanic families be considered a factor when attempting to answer the why’s of our absence in Universities and Colleges?

by Keyla Elizabeth Cedano


About Adriana Villavicencio

Dr. Adriana Villavicencio is the youngest child of Ecuadorian immigrants. She has moved 29 times in her life, taking her on a journey from California to Bangalore, India, and New York City, where she recently earned a Ph.D. in Education Leadership and works as a Research Associate at New York University. An avid traveler, Adriana has collected experiences in four different continents and 16 different countries. But as a former high school English teacher, some of her fondest memories are those of her brilliant and brilliantly funny students in Brooklyn and Oakland. Adriana has contributed to several publications including the Daily News and, and is a managing editor for the Journal of Equity in Education. She earned a B.A. in English and an M.A. in English Education at Columbia University, and currently serves on the board of Columbia’s Latino Alumni Association (LAACU). She enjoys scary movies with red vines, Sauvignon Blanc, and her Maltese dog, Napoleon.

To learn more about Adriana’s education consulting company, please visit

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the author and should not be understood to be shared by Being Latino, Inc.


  1. Orville M. says:

    I think its a little bit of both depending on what socio-economic and education level the parents are. In my case, both parents never past the 8th grade and the only thing I heard about education was the proverbial “estudia para que haga algo” and thats it. It was my environment that guided me to go to my current path. But you put it perfectly “However, I do see a correlation between a lifetime of no decision-making and suddenly having control of your life.” I changed my major 3 times and graduated on my 4th choice and now I am trying to get an advanced degree outside of the major I chose (all has a reason why I got to this point)…

    FYI, i just learned about BL…LOVING IT!

  2. K. Cedano says:

    I think I might be on to something ;)

    Glad you love the page, feel free to suggest! We love growing =D

  3. jiky87 says:

    Loved reading this … like reading about my own life!

  4. k. Cedano says:

    @ Jiky87, Glad I’m not alone… ;)


  1. […] familia:  They throw the best parties; don’t behave at funerals; argue with us; make decisions for us, yet somehow help us live […]

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