America Ferrera has revealed what prevented her from quitting acting.
The actress, who has been named Glamour's Woman of the Year, has opened up about her experience in Hollywood in an essay for the publication.
In the essay, the 39-year-old actress revealed that there was a time when she considered leaving her acting career behind as she worried that she was being "frivolous".
America, who began her acting career while studying at the University of Southern California, "started to doubt" if acting was worth it during her freshman year in college.
"Was I simply being frivolous and driven by my own ego and ambition? I considered quitting acting, because I had decided it was a selfish dream and I should instead become a lawyer or a legislator, someone who could actually make a difference," the Barbie star wrote.
America remembered the moment when a professor reassured her that actors can make a difference and even told her that her film, 2002's Real Women Have Curves, had had a "life-changing" impact on one of his young mentees.
"He explained to me that my movie was life-changing for this young girl and had allowed her to have a conversation that she had never thought possible," America recalled. "He allowed me to see storytelling as a powerful tool for change. And from that moment on, I understood that my dreams didn't have to be exclusive to one another - I could pursue what I wanted and also use the stories I told, and the platform I had, to impact the lives of others."
America rose to fame when she was cast as Betty Suarez in Ugly Betty. The series ran from 2006 until 2010.
Throughout her acting career, America has been an advocate for women's rights, immigration reform, and diversity.