Familia First
Features, Seniors

Familia First

By Emme Townsend

Her nieces and nephews run around outside. She loves them with all her heart, but it’s hard to tell them that directly. When it’s time to eat, she has to call them inside. ¡Entra! The young kids come running inside.

Her first language is not Spanish, but it’s the first language of some of her family members.

Senior Janet Wegener plans to major in Spanish at Ball State University.

“A lot of people in my family are Hispanic through marriage so I have a couple nieces and nephews who are Mexican,” Wegener said. “I want to improve my Spanish so that I can speak to my family members whose first language is Spanish.”

Wegener has five brothers and two sisters. One of her brothers, Josh, met his Hispanic wife, Ashley, while he attended college in Colorado. Josh and Ashley have been married for three years and have a one-year-old daughter Olivia.

Her sister, Jenni, married a Mexican man named William. The two met at Puerta Vallarta and have been together for five years. They have three children, 4-year-old Willy, 2-year-old Zoe, and five-month-old Diego. Janet’s oldest niece and nephew are both speaking, and she practices her Spanish with them.

Janet and her nephew Willy. (Photo Provided)
Janet and her nephew Willy. (Photo Provided)

Wegener is in her fourth year of Spanish at Delta, but could not fit the Spanish Club into her schedule.

Wegener has played tennis for three years at Delta. She is pictured on her senior night next to Coach Tim Cleland. (Photo taken by James Root)
Wegener has played tennis for three years at Delta. She is pictured on her senior night next to Coach Tim Cleland. (Photo taken by James Root)

Spanish culture is also one of Janet’s interests. She is captivated by the food, the dance, and the people of Spain. She hopes to go on a mission trip there in the future.

“They don’t always have much, but they enjoy life with what they have,” Wegener said. “I want to be a part of that and I want to help them in some way.” 

She chose to study at Ball State because of the short distance and the language program. Wegener is considering a career in nursing, specifically pediatric nursing.

A young Janet posed for a picture next to Ball State's mascot Charlie Cardinal. (Photo Provided)
A young Janet posed for a picture next to Ball State’s mascot Charlie Cardinal. (Photo Provided)

The senior is not sure what career path she is going to pursue, but she knows that earning a Spanish degree will allow her to explore her options.

“Choosing a career is difficult for everyone, and no one really has it figured out,” Wegener said. “Being bilingual will give me some advantages in whichever career path I decide to take.”

May 10, 2023

About Author

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emersontownsend Emerson “Emme” Townsend is a sophomore at Delta High School. This is her second year on the Eagle's Eye staff. She enjoys spending time with her friends and watching Michigan football.


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