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Aidee of Lehman College is TheDream.US’ “DREAMer of the Week”

For Immediate Release: March 26th, 2020

Contact: Carli Kientzle at [email protected]

 

Aidee of Lehman College is TheDream.US’ “DREAMer of the Week”

 

Washington, DC – TheDream.US, the nation’s largest college access and success program for undocumented immigrant youth, is continuing its “DREAMer of the Week” feature – a weekly profile of a TheDream.US Scholar whose story offers a powerful example of the incalculable contributions of DREAMers to America.

 

This week’s DREAMer is Aide, a Scholar of Lehman College:

This last fall, I began my sophomore year of college as a proud member of the Lehman College class of 2021. I will be the first member of my family to graduate college, and as a Business Health Administration major, it is my dream to provide adequate health care services to those in need. I wouldn’t be here without TheDream.US, and the last thing I would want is for this incredible educational opportunity to be taken away because of our current President and his administration.

I spent the first eight years of my life in Mexico. When my father found out my mother was pregnant, he left her to raise me alone. To provide me with a better life for me, my mother moved to the United States, leaving me behind in Mexico with distant family members. My life in Mexico was tough, but my mother was tougher. When she saved enough to move me to the United States, she was working two jobs. When I first moved to America, we lived in an apartment with seven other people, so we could afford rent.

One of the biggest challenges in my early education was learning the English language. Young kids, especially those who cannot understand the struggles of immigration, can be so cruel. I was made fun of because of my clothes and my accent. For a very long time, I was discouraged every day going to school and struggled with the anxiety that I would never fit in. Over time as I grew older and moved onto middle school, and then high school, I found my circle of friends who helped me feel like I belonged.

I can’t thank my mother enough for fighting so hard to provide for me, and it breaks my heart that she cannot apply for U.S. citizenship. Because she crossed the border illegally, there is no pardon available, which makes her unqualified to apply. Therefore, my mother not only has no health insurance, she also has no pension, and it will be extremely difficult for her to retire. Currently, at 46 years old, she is pursuing her middle school diploma.

America is my home and I wouldn’t have it any other way. I want to finish college and fight for women like my mother, who have worked so hard in order to call America home.

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TheDream.US has provided over 5,000 college scholarships to DREAMers at more than 70 partner colleges in 16 states and Washington, DC.

The Scholars’ stories are especially powerful and poignant following the Supreme Court oral arguments on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, an executive action, which provided temporary legal protection for undocumented youth, terminated by President Trump in September 2017. The legal limbo and uncertainty is affecting Scholars’ lives, health, and futures and threatens to keep Scholars from fulfilling their incredible potential.

  • Read through TheDream.US Scholar story-bank, featuring powerful personal reflections from Scholars about their lives, journeys, and future goals here
  • Hear from two TheDream.US graduates, now working as a teacher and a nurse, discussing the impact of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program online here
  • Watch a new video featuring TheDream.US college graduates online here

 

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TheDream.US National Scholarship Applications are still open. The deadline to apply is Feb 29, 2024.

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