Junior Simi - Green Card Voices

Junior Simi

Occupation: Student

Country of Birth: Samoa

Current: O’ahu, Hawai’i

“I care a lot about my family and hope to be successful in the future, buying a car and house, starting my own family, and helping my loved ones in any way I can.”

Junior was born in American Samoa, where his life was simple but challenging. Due to their financial difficulties, his family grew crops to make ends meet. They grew taro, fa’i (banana), and other crops to sell at the market to pay for things like school supplies. Despite the hardships, he remembers his family and relatives were very close. 

When Junior was twelve, his father decided to move the family after hearing there was better education available and more opportunities in Hawai‘i, and to reunite with his cousin, Tony, who was already settled there. To Junior, moving to Hawai‘i wasn’t easy. It was not only a change of scenery but a whole new world. The English language was difficult to learn and made things tough for Junior at first, and he needed help from classmates to translate for him. But he was amazed by things like air-conditioned buses, trains, and high-rise buildings, all completely new to him.

With his family’s support, Junior continued working hard at school while adjusting to his new environment. Moving to Hawai‘i was a challenge, but he now understands English better and embraces his new life while staying connected to his love of music and love for his family and relatives back in American Samoa.

Junior is focused on finishing high school and planning to join the army. His experiences taught him to appreciate his family and gave him a drive to succeed. His dream is to eventually come back to Hawai‘i and continue to support those he loves.