Camila Brosio, a graphic design student at UVU, has always loved communicating through art, but her passion for art began before she opened the doors and stepped foot onto campus in Orem, Utah.
Brosio’s love for art began in her hometown of Buenos Aires, Argentina — the largest city in the country — where she spent her childhood doing crafts every day after school with her mom and sister.
Growing up she enjoyed drinking an Argentine drink called mate, listening to her grandparents share stories and savoring the architecture and food in the city that is heavily influenced by Italian, French and Spanish ancestry.
“I would say I am a city person,” she said. “I love the city. I love it when there is a lot of noise. I love going to the city and getting food. There is a lot of good food in Buenos Aires. Food is very important to us. Not only because of the flavors and the things we cook but because it helps us gather. It gives you a sense of friendship gathering with neighbors that sadly people can’t do right now with COVID.”
Spotlight: ArgentinaIn Argentina, it is very common to see vendors selling their products on public transportation.
“A random vendor will go up and say, ‘I have batteries, do you need them?’ They have pens, agendas, remote controls, ice cream, and sandwiches. It is so random and I think about it now and I’m like, why do we do that? But in Argentina it is so common you don’t even think about it.”
Brosio said that while she has many wonderful memories of her home country, she also remembers growing up with a constant feeling of fear because of the dangerous activity in her country. She spent a lot of time at home with her family where she felt safe. As a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, she expressed that she always felt like she was in “double danger” because she had to avoid things like alcohol and parties — which some of her friends participated in — that her church admonishes against.
Camila said that there were problems that she wishes she could change about Argentina such as the government and the higher education system.
“We have had bad leadership in the government for a few years, and people have lost hope because you just feel like there is no way you can progress, set goals, and achieve them,” she said.
In Argentina, most colleges are public and highly subsidized by the government, which means students don’t pay tuition. However, there are still hidden costs like transportation and class materials which makes it difficult for low-income students to enroll.
“It is very accessible for anyone to get a college education, but at the same time, because it is public and professors don’t get paid as much, the classes and the education you get either takes you a little bit longer, or it isn’t actually as good as if you’d be paying for it at a private school,” she said.
For more opportunities, Brosio and her family moved to Utah when she was 18 after graduating high school in Argentina. She decided to serve a two-year mission for her church, and when she came home, she was ready to go to college.
“My plan was to go to BYU, and I am grateful that I didn’t go. No offense to BYU, I think it is a great school, but for me as an international student, UVU had plenty of opportunities to get involved and be more successful,” she said.
Spotlight: CamilaCamila’s favorite piece of personal artwork is a self portrait she created for her sister.
“I made my sister a portrait of her. It was an illustration but it was all digitally made. That reaction of her getting it was even better than the actual piece of art. That is the one that I like the most, the meaning.”
Since enrolling at UVU, Camila has become a member of the International Student Council and she is currently an inclusion leader through the UVU Ambassador program. She loves to help minorities and underrepresented communities as an international student herself.
“Once I started taking college here, I loved the way professors took care of me and every resource, advisors, mentors, faculty members, everyone was there to help me. I really valued that,” Brosio said.
When asked about how the life transition from Argentina has been, Brosio said that it was hard for her family to leave everything and everyone behind, but they are happy here. While it is still her country, she feels compelled to succeed in a different part of the world now.
“I want to continue cooking the things that we cook, speak Spanish, make my kids listen to the songs that I listened to when I was growing up,” she said. “Those kinds of things that really make a culture a culture. That is what I am, and I’m not going to force my kids to be that, but I want them to know who their mom is and who she was growing up.”
After finishing her graphic design program, Brosio said that she dreams of working as an intern for The Walt Disney Co. and to continue to find ways to grow and continue moving forward.
“I think everyone can do whatever they want to do. Everyone is able to achieve their dreams if they want to. It takes work and sacrifice, but if you want it and you take action and you look for ways to achieve it, you can do it. If I am from Argentina I can do big things, everyone can.”