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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at UC Berkeley chapter.

If you couldn’t tell by the title, I love my dad. He has had the biggest influence on my educational and career goals. Funny enough though, I don’t actually think he knows that, at least not until he inevitably reads this. Unlike my mom and I, my dad and I are always in silly goofy moods around each other. 

When I was younger, I’ll admit I was a peak puberty-acting pre-teen with my dad. Unlike my mom, it was a lot harder to connect to him, because we literally had nothing in common. But I definitely think the whole growing up part of life brought us a lot closer together. I like to think I brought out his ‘chill out’ lifestyle while he brought out my inner ‘gotta live like it’s my last day” motto.

One of my favorite memories with my dad was in September 2021. I had won two tickets to see a bunch of musicians play for a charity. And because I had no one to go with, my dad was the fateful victim of my concert insanity. Who knew that would end up being one of the best days I had in a while and one of the reasons he went on a concert spree? I really only wanted to see one band play at this concert, so I told my dad we could leave directly after they played. Turns out that the band ended up playing first, but, apparently, my dad loved it so much we stayed the full three hours of the show. Unironically he ended up loving the band too! Safe to say from that day on, my dad suddenly turned into a 20-year-old man by the way he goes to concerts — sometimes without me! 

Another favorite concert memory of mine was when my dad and I went to see The Weeknd in 2022. By this point, my dad and I share one brain cell when it comes to music, from bandas to girly pop, my dad and I have identical playlists. Anyway, this concert was definitely the highlight of my dad’s year. He had no clue up until maybe three weeks before the show, that we were going to see The Weeknd so he went in basically blind. But by the end of the show, into the parking lot, he kept on chanting how he could die peacefully knowing he saw The Weeknd. Although this was insane of him to say, I couldn’t have been more happy knowing I took him to see one of his favorite musicians where he could jam out. 

What separates my dad from others though is his career and its influence on my life. My dad, basically since he came to the United States, has been a construction worker for a small Los Angeles company. As a kid, he was always bringing in large rolls of blueprints and power drills home. Some of my earliest memories were going to his job’s office, getting on forklifts, and pretending like I was driving them. Or him driving my sister and me to some of his construction sites on weekends and eating donuts while blasting Y2K Latin music as he works on houses. Obviously, I can’t forget the endless photos that were taken when our family passed around his hard helmet in the car.

Although my dad doesn’t know this, it was these memories that led to my love for architecture and 3D design. He doesn’t know, but one of the only reasons I loved engineering was because it reflected so much on those nights when he was in the dining room making changes or looking over blue plans. Without his unannounced involvement, I’d probably be sitting and writing about how I have no clue what I want to do in life. 

My dad, my idol, my inspiration. My dad is the example; he came from nothing to everything. He won’t admit it, but my dad is what so many lower-privileged immigrants aspire to become. If it weren’t for him, who knows where I’d be, but with him I have someone I can laugh with, play all genres of music with, and talk philosophically with. Maybe not philosophical, but somewhat smart. Regardless of whether you have a dad or not, find your idol, the person who helped shape you today, and tell them you love them or are just grateful for them.

Monica Luna Miguel

UC Berkeley '27

Monica is a freshman at the University of California, Berkeley, intending to major in Architecture and Political Science and minor in Journalism. She is currently a writer for the Berkeley chapter and enjoys writing about her college and personal experiences. Monica has experience in writing for newspapers and magazines. After graduating she hopes to pursue a masters degree in Architecture. She also hopes to work for an editorial team in some of today's most popular newspapers as well as speak about the politics behind today's world. Coming from the city of Los Angeles she loves going to concerts and listening to music. Monica also has a strong passion for literature and reading all the classics and new up and coming authors. She also has a bit of an obsession with video editing.