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Best of the Week 2022-2023: Teaching to the Future


Congratulations to John Mendoza '24 on winning second place for his poem "Viajero" which was featured in the March 2023 issue of Albricias, the quarterly magazine for Sociedad Honoraria Hispánica. Students who are members of Sociedad Honoraria Hispánica across the United States are invited to submit poetry, prose, art and photography to be featured in Albricias publications which focus on a given theme. For this month's "travel themed" issue, only thirty students across the country were chosen to have their works featured in Albricias, and John's poem was not only one of the select few pieces chosen, but was granted second place as being one of the best pieces submitted.

Originally from the Philippines, John has grown up speaking Spanish since he was a child and continued conversing in Spanish with friends and neighbors when he moved to the United States in 2006. With his continued education of the Spanish language at St. Ed's, John is a member of St. Ed's chapter within Sociedad Honoraria Hispánica and plans to study other languages in college while pursuing a degree in agricultural engineering.

John's poem, "Viajero," which translates to "traveler," tells the story of immigration from an individual's point of view, centered around the desire for a better life and hope for the future. "As a kid, I was always intrigued by my parents' story of leaving the Philippines for a better life in the United States. I spent a lot of time thinking and asking about the different things they saw or heard in the weeks leading up to their flight to the U.S. and I wanted to write my poem through the lens of their experiences," says John. "I wanted audiences to empathize with the traveler in my poem and understand the experiences of an immigrant because we often don't see our country from the perspective of foreigners. I wanted my poem to provide audiences with that perspective. I was definitely surprised when I found out that my poem was selected to be featured and was granted an award. This is the first time I wrote poetry for an audience outside of St. Ed's and it feels amazing knowing that I've written something so many people can enjoy."


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