America Georgine Ferrera (born April 18, 1984) is an American actress who is known for playing the lead role in the television series Ugly Betty. She also starred in the movies Real Women Have Curves, Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, its sequel Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2, and The Dry Land.
Ferrera, the youngest of six children, was born in Los Angeles, California, to parents who immigrated to the United States from Honduras in the mid-1970s. Her mother worked as a housecleaning staff director for a hotel. Her mother raised Ferrera and her siblings, always stressing the importance of higher education.
Ferrera was raised in the Woodland Hills section of Los Angeles, where she attended George Ellery Hale Middle School and El Camino Real High School. From the time she was seven years old, when she landed a small role in a school production of Hamlet and then at age 10 a much bigger role as the Artful Dodger in Oliver!, Ferrera knew that she wanted to be a performer. She acted in school plays and community theater in Los Angeles throughout her youth, though with little help from her mother, who insisted that she pursue other interests because she was concerned her daughter would not get a fair shake. Ferrera was forced to take the bus to auditions, though eventually her mother saw her daughter’s dedication and began to drive her. Ferrera disliked her first name as a child and went by her middle name, "Georgine", until she began acting professionally.