Testimony – July 2007

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Finally There Will Be A Better Future
by Germàn Silveira Accuosto

Germàn Silveira Accuosto

I was born in 1972 in Montevideo. A year later, I started kicking a ball when a military dictatorship came to power in my country, similar to many other countries in South America. One could say that I spent the first 12 years of my life playing under “repressive” conditions. If I had more freedom, maybe I would have become like Zidane…who knows!

My parents decided to give me the best education possible as the only way to fight the confusion of the time. They registered me in a French high school in Montevideo where I completed my primary and secondary education. Without doubt, these years were the most impressionable of my life. Interestingly, if I am able to complete a Masters degree at a university in Geneva, it is thanks to the decision my parents made more than 30 years ago.

During the years I spent at primary school and the first few years of high school, I remember a mean teacher (Mr. Pereda) who performed uniform and hair inspections. The day he made an appearance at the school, everyone had to behave properly in class; we had to have our hair cut short and our shoes well-shined. He would say, “Conduct yourselves with military precision.” “Pereda’s coming today,” was the word in the hallways and it was enough for us to completely understand. Never mind that the school was French, the high school was not exempt from these ridiculous inspections.

It was also at the French high school that I met my best friends, with whom I continue to play football and eat barbecue. Their parents were my godparents and they will be godparents to my children. Friendship took over Uruguay the same as religion takes over other countries in the world.

After receiving my high school diploma, I received a degree in Social Communication, which allowed me to work for almost 10 years as a writer for different advertising agencies in my country. One day I thought about my future with an agency and told myself, “You have to go back to school.” It was because of this decision (and of the decision of my parents more than 30 years ago) that I was given a scholarship and now hold a Masters of Communication from the University of Geneva.

It has been a few months since my brother Federico and his wife Veronica had their first daughter Josefina and I am very happy because my niece will grow up and receive her education in a free environment/country.

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