By Christian Guerithault ’14
People from all over the world aspire to come to the United States in search of the American Dream, of more opportunity and a better life.
Mr. Richard Cordova is one of those people.
Mr. Cordova teaches five Spanish classes at Brophy: four Conversational Spanish classes and now one Spanish 2 class, which he took on after Ms. Maria Dominguez’s departure.
Mr. Cordova has been at Brophy since 2011, and he said there are so many things that he loves about the school and teaching.
“Educating the human being is very powerful,” Mr. Cordova said. “Also the spiritual part is powerful and meaningful for me to see every day in every student here at Brophy.”
One of Mr. Cordova’s students, senior Jake Porter ’14, had praise for his teacher.
“I think that Mr. Cordova is a great teacher,” Porter said. “He keeps us engaged and focused by making jokes, but also keep us busy and learning at the same time.”
Porter said Mr. Cordova is not only a great teacher in class, but he is also an influential person outside of teaching Spanish.
“He is an awesome guy, he’s very fun and relaxed,” Porter said. “He has a ton of influence on the students, especially when he talks about morals and values in class and leaving your ego at the door.”
Mr. Cordova is originally from Bolivia. He came to Arizona Nov. 16, 1991.
“I went to a Catholic university in Bolivia and after I finished my studies there was a great opportunity to come to Arizona,” Mr. Cordova said. “I would not call it luck, I would call it a blessing.”
The process of becoming an American citizen can be difficult and time consuming.
“I married an American and through our marriage I became a citizen,” Mr. Cordova said. “After you do the application it takes about five years.”
This year’s Summit on Human Dignity is on the topic of race, something Mr. Cordova said he has experienced firsthand.
He said he has felt racism in America when going through the immigration process of becoming a citizen.
“You have the sense and the feeling that people look at you in a different way,” Mr. Cordova said. “You feel that and it is hard to ignore.”
Mr. Cordova said he thinks that one day racism will end.
“I think it will end, I think we are responsible to end it,” Mr. Cordova said. “I believe in my heart that we are going to end it and great things are coming.”
Mr. Cordova said Pope Francis is evidence of that.
“The Pope is one example of that, I think we need to follow that example as the leader,” Mr. Cordova said. “It’s a challenge for you, me, and everybody here at Brophy and all over the world to change that and to see everybody as a whole person, not just a color, or a belief, or a particular religion.”