Hi, my name is Erikka Diaz. I'm 18-years-old and I was born in downtown Manhattan. I'm interested in music. I spend most of my time with my family and friends. I enjoy making them happy and attending parties. My plans for the future are to continue with my education and graduate from college.
I live in the South Bronx. I love the atmosphere even though it has its down sides. I wouldn't change it or anything because it's where I hold my childhood memories. When I was a kid, every summer my neighborhood would have block parties. I would spend most of the time with close friends and family dancing to loud music and eating from musical ice cream trucks. I love the South Bronx.
One interesting fact about me is the fact that I can play guitar and my favorite song to play is "Happy Birthday." Whenever it's one of my loved ones' birthdays I play it for them and they love it. I love my guitar. (October 2009)
My recorder's name is Michelle, because in Spanish my name is Miguelina. My recorder can hear very well from a distance, it can stop and play, and it also brings me bravery. I feel brave when I carry it. It gives me the courage to approach a random person and ask questions.
(Note: Each Rookie named his/her equipment as a way to feel more at ease with the technology.)
With joblessness at a 26 year high, many people across the country are getting a crash course in coping with the stress of not having a steady pay check. Rookie Reporter Erikka Diaz, like many of her neighbors in South Bronx, has lived in poverty her whole life. Her family knows well the anxiety that comes with constantly having to scrape enough money together to pay the rent, buy groceries, and have enough left over for all the things kids want, like going to the prom, or a new pair of sneakers.
In the South Bronx, where Miguelina "Erikka" Diaz lives, she's heard a lot of people complain about the government. But many of them don't vote, even this year, when so many parents and teachers and activists are working hard to get out the vote.