Juancruz Montalvo “I risked it all to come to Alaska”
by T. womack
Juancruz Montalvo Rivas is a recent graduate of the University of Alaska Fairbanks. He majored in both Spanish and Japanese with a Minor in TESOL, also known as Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages.
I asked Juancruz what brought him to Fairbanks. He was living in Virginia when he began searching for low cost, out of state schools to attend. His search led him to a website where he chose his criteria for his educational goals. UAF was his top option. “I always heard people say that college is an adventure. So, I thought, why not make it double? I’ve never been to Alaska before, so why not try it out?” he said to himself.
During his time at UAF, he was a member of the Japanese Alaska Club, Esports Center’s ‘Gamer Guide’ for League of Legends, and the Muslim Student Association. On campus he served as a resident assistant for Residence Life for almost four years. His current goal is to gain more experience in teaching (in any language), hopefully join the Peace Corps, or the JET program, and he says, “just try to see what’s out there in the world.” He hopes to work for an Embassy as a top tier translator or for the UN.
Juancruz is a beloved radio show and podcast host for his broadcast titled Two Peas in the Snow. The show is live on Wednesdays from 4-5 pm. You can find the shows online, on most streaming platforms. “Our topics vary a lot, and we just have fun discussing whatever we like to. Sometimes we bring in guests and other times we just feature music focused shows with minimal to no talking.”
When I asked Juancruz what he would like people to know about him, his response was, “That I am a first-generation student who pretty much risked it all to come to Alaska. I only had myself to rely on as my parents live in El Salvador, another country, and my sisters had other ambitions in life. While being here in UAF I got to meet many great people and explore and learn a lot both in and out of the classroom. When it comes to learning a language, it definitely is hard. Even I’m not the greatest at Japanese. And with the lack of Spanish speakers in Fairbanks, it does make it tough to engage and use my native language. Just keep on pushing with learning a new language and use it, like a lot. Every chance you get will make it easier for you to become fluent.”
We wish this young man all the best on his next adventure! Find Two Peas in The Snow at: https://rss.com/ podcasts/twopeasinthesnow/
PROUDLY POWERED BY SOL DE MEDIANOCHE NEWS, LLC. Sol de Medianoche is a monthly publication of the Latino community in Anchorage, Alaska