25 years ago my parents and I immigrated to this country together. I was 9 months old and they were 20/21 years old at the time. My parents made the greatest of sacrifices by immigrating here always putting me first. I was their only child at the time. I joined the immigrant rights movement in 2009 at the age of 17. At this point my parents were 37/38 and the three of us were undocumented and very afraid. I still did not know what it meant to be undocumented and unafraid at the time. I barely understood what it meant to be undocumented. Something my parents knew all to well since they first stepped foot on this side of the border. Soon I became empowered and embodied what it meant to be undocumented and unafraid because I learned my rights. I recognized that I deserved dignity and respect regardless of my immigration status, and so did my parents. I was part of the national push for the DREAM Act 2010. I recall my parents time and time again saying, “It’s fine if we aren’t granted a pathway to citizenship, as long as they create a pathway for you.” I looked at my parents with admiration because what they expressed was among the most selfless affirmations. I was extremely naive. This movement will do that to you. Those against us will do that to you. Conquer and divide with narratives that have you validating your demand for opportunities while you disregard the humanity of those that have done so much for you to be where you are. This includes the DREAMer narrative. I was naive because I failed to look at my parents to tell them, “No! My goals and aspirations, my relief and peace of mind should not come at the expense of yours.” At the time, I failed to view my parents beyond the lens of their son. I failed to view my parents for the human beings they are beyond any role or connection they have in my life. How many more reiterations of their dreams will my mother and father have to devise? How many more reiterations of the DREAM Act, DACA, CIR and other legislation will we recycle before all of our humanity and dreams are at the forefront? Years went on and in 2015 my parents adjusted their status to legal permanent residents after 23 long years. I remember the expression of guilt they tried to hide because I was not able to adjust with them. The irony right…my parents would have given up everything for me to have this long sought relief before them. I stand before them everyday still waiting. I never explicitly told my parents, but I want them to know that they are not guilty of anything. You are not guilty of making the journey 25 years ago because you put me first every step of the way. You are not guilty of your relief while I still wait because there is no doubt in my mind that if you could you would let me take your place in a heartbeat. Undocumented or not, my parents will forever be my greatest of allies. Mom and dad, you taught me to dream before I even knew I was undocumented. I am a dreamer because you no matter what I aspired to be or create, you’ve supported me every step of the way. Even some of my craziest ideas. I am not a DREAMer because of a bill that seeks to transfer any guilt from me onto others like my parents. I am a dreamer not a DREAMer [by current definition]. The DREAMer identity is a by product of my unsolicited opinion — like a vast number of categories that politicians and the media strive to place us in. Mom and dad, you and others like you are the original dreamers. These are my reflections and I share with you in hopes that we will not repeat past mistakes. May you not compromise the humanity of others in the community in your pursuit to validate your own. Before they are mothers, fathers, tios, aunts, grandfathers, abuelitas, street vendors, carwasheros, household workers, jornaleros — they are humans first with dreams of their own. They are the original dreamers.
We Are Not The Original DREAMers
By: Ivan Ceja Garcia
The Dream Summer Scholarship
The Dream Summer Scholarship has been established to support Undocumented students who are taking courses during summer semester at the University of Utah. This scholarship grants multiple awards valued at $1000 each. Scholarships will be disbursed in one sum for the Summer 2018 semester and will be applied directly to students' tuition at the University of Utah. WHO QUALIFIES? Students must be enrolled in summer classes at the University of Utah Undocumented students (with or without DACA) who graduated from a Utah high school Continuing University of Utah undergraduate students in pursuit of their first undergraduate degree Demonstrate satisfactory progress toward a degree with a cumulative GPA of 2.0 or higher Preference will be given to students who demonstrate financial need Preference will be given to students who do not qualify for HB 144 or DACA
#HeretoStay Undocumented Student Scholarship
Requirements: The Somos Dreamers #HeretoStay Undocumented Student Scholarship is a private scholarship made possible by the generous donations of members of our community. The #HeretoStay scholarship awards scholarships to undocumented students (with or without DACA) who will attend a USHE college or university in 2018-2019. The award will be disbursed at the request of the student for the Summer 2018, Fall 2018 and/or Spring 2019 semesters.
Que Llueva Café Scholarship
Requirements: Be a current high school senior planning to enroll for the first time in an accredited college or university in the United States. Scholarship evaluates three key areas of evaluation: (1) Your personal story, which takes into account financial need and other compelling challenges the applicant has had to endure; (2) extra-curricular involvement, which includes anything you do outside of class like community involvement, work, and clubs; and (3) Your academic promise, which is not limited to GPA or test scores but, more importantly, looks at your academic potential for the future.