My heart is in Mexico: A University of Nebraska-Lincoln student’s story

My heart is in Mexico: A University of Nebraska-Lincoln student’s story

By Sydny Boyd, NewsNetNebraska

University of Nebraska-Lincoln senior broadcasting major Emmanual Sanchez-Mora said this photo encompasses “Manny,” a relaxed, more fun version of his professional self.

A Life Split in Half

Emmanuel Sanchez-Mora is a senior at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. He lives in Crete, Neb. and drives to the University of Nebraska-Lincoln every day for class. He is majoring in journalism.

“My dad came to Wisconsin for better opportunity,” Sanchez-Mora said. “He brought my family here in 2011. We moved to Milwaukee, Wisconsin.”

He didn’t remember much about the physical act of moving, as far as how long the drive was or where they stopped along the way. He just remembers the feeling of being ripped away from his family.

“I had to leave everyone behind,” he said. “That’s something that never goes away. I still deal with that feeling now. I hate to leave anyone, I don’t want anyone to be alone.”


Sanchez-Mora became an American citizen two days before September 11, 2001. “I moved here on November 19,” Sanchez-Mora said. “I remember it very clearly.”

Sanchez-Mora’s family is large, which is typical of Mexican culture, he said.

“Ninety-eight percent of my family is still in Mexico. Including my fiance,” Sanchez-Mora said. “I go back and see them every break from school, so about every 3 months.”

Sanchez-Mora said it doesn’t matter how successful or unsuccessful his semester is, he goes home to Mexico.

“That’s my family,” he said. “No matter what is going on or what I have to do, I have to go back. That is my family.”

1,651.5 Miles Away

“The love of my life is in Mexico,” Sanchez-Mora said.

Emmanuel Sanchez-Mora is in Crete, Neb. and his fiance is in Guadalajara, Mexico.

Sanchez-Mora’s fiance lives in Guadalajara, Mexico. It would take him 27 hours to drive and see her. Usually, he flies. That takes eight hours. They’ve been together for three years. They’ve been through the ups and downs, he said.

His fiance is the one that keeps him going. We talked about how his relationship has changed over the last few years. Listen here.

Sanchez-Mora and his fiance at a wedding in 2016.

Pride. Pride. Pride.

Even though it’s tough, Sanchez-Mora is in the United States for his career. He wants to become a bilingual reporter.

“Some days are really hard,” he said. “I want to go back to Mexico more than anything. But I am here to start working and doing something really good. That’s why my parents brought me to this country. I just want them to be proud of me as a man.”

He’s gone through anxiety, depression and loss like most college students. But what makes it different for Sanchez-Mora, is that he has close to 100 family members waiting for him to visit in Mexico. He has a flight to catch that will take him to a different country. He has a fiance that’s calling and texting and trying to figure out a time to talk about their days. He has an uncle that loves him so much, he moved him to America. He has two parents who can’t wait to see their son on television.

Sanchez-Mora’s parents holding an achievement award that he earned.

“I have unconditional support from so many people,” he said. “I got to push through the sad times for them. They make the happy ones.”

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