WE ARE: A Nation of Immigrants - New Haven 2018
New Haven Green A10
Current occupation: Student and activist
Arrival in the US: 2010
Reason for migration: I immigrated with my family when I was 16 to seek better educational and employment opportunities.
Commentary: I am 23 and was majoring at UConn in chemical engineering. Right now, I am taking a year off to reassess my professional goals. I am working for the Junta for Progressive Action and have discovered that I have a passion for social justice and for educating immigrants about their rights. I think I may switch my career plans and go to law school!
Before you come to this country, a lot of people tell you that living in the United States is going to be perfect from the beginning. It’s like they give you a beautifully wrapped gift, but once you look inside, you see it’s a bunch of coal. It’s useful. You can light it on fire and keep yourself warm, but it’s certainly not beautiful. Some immigration stories do have happy endings, but there are also a lot of struggles that come with it. When I first got here, I felt very alone and isolated, living in a culture that was very different from my life in Mexico. I had to prove to others that I was worth their time and effort, that I was much more than whatever stereotype they had in their minds. And that constant need to prove yourself can break you down over time. Luckily, New Haven has offered me a strong support system and I really cannot think of a better place to have ended up. I’m thankful for that for sure.