I am Laura Celi Kerr, an international student attending to Tennessee Technological University (TN TECH) majoring in Marketing. I was born and raised in Maracay, Venezuela. My father, Luis Celi, is a doctor specialized in pulmonology and infectology; while my mother, Nena Kerr, runs her own dance academy called “Escuela de Ballet Nena Kerr”. Thanks to this background, I graduated as a professional dancer at the age of 16 and worked for the dance school for 2 years.
I first started attending university by the time I turned 17 years old (2013) with the intention of pursuing a degree in Foreign Languages with a minor in Business. After 3 semesters I decided to improve my language skills by taking English lessons in Tennessee during the summer which gave the opportunity to apply to TN TECH, and before I knew it I was starting my first semester in Spring 2015. As for today, one of my hobbies is (still) dancing, as well as singing, drawing, and exploring new languages.
How do you define a millennial?
Besides being born between early 1980’s and early 2000’s, and being misjudged by other generations; we millennials are mostly liberal, diverse, and explorers. We are adaptable to any situation and able to perform several tasks if we are allowed to be flexible with our methods, we enjoy that feeling of autonomy. We are curious, and thanks to our exposure to the internet we can satiate our thirst for knowledge. Sometimes we struggle to find our true self or even purpose in our lives, but when we find what we are passionate about we become unstoppable, more confident, committed and ambitious.
Where are you from and how does that influence your perspective of the world?
I am from Venezuela, located in South America. I believe that living away from one’s home-country shapes our mind in an unique way. I experienced adaptability in a whole different level; I opened my mind to a new language, a new system, a new culture without leaving mine behind in order to survive and enjoy life in the United States. Today, I have a broader perspective of the world as a result of experiencing different lifestyles in different countries along with its difficulties. We are all going through some particular event in our lives that ends up bringing us closer to each other.
What brings you happiness?
Being part a something exclusive whether is a group, a community, a generation, or a country, without loosing my personal essence, my unique virtues, and my voice makes me happy. Then, the fact that speaking my mind in any kind of way can actually make someone’s life a little bit better, happier or even easier. All that brings me true happiness.
What are you passionate about?
I am passionate about singing with a purpose. I find myself constantly singing when I am feeling some kind of way. I sing to express myself freely. By singing, not only I can communicate a message whether is mine or someone else’s, but also I can make others feel something.
What has been your biggest challenge so far and how have you overcome it?
My biggest challenge was moving out of my home-country because getting out of my comfort zone was not a choice but a must. Now I was residing in the United States and attending university, but I was not feeling part of the community. After a while I convinced myself to talk to new people and go to any school event. Then, I started attending workshops, asking my professors for advice and I even joined a club, until I had the opportunity to join the National Millennial Community. Getting out of your comfort zone is not easy, but it is possible.
If you knew there was no possibility of failure, what would your profession be?
I definitely would be a singer and songwriter.
What are 3 goals you want to achieve by this date in 2018?
By this date in 2018 I will have achieved a summer-paid internship, starting my last semester as an undergrad student, and being confident enough to represent myself, my ideas and opinions in the best way possible.