Global Nation Education dives into immigrant student life — inside and outside the classroom — and meets everyone from newcomers to the kids of immigrants, along with their teachers and families, to hear what it means to learn and strive in America.
Undocumented immigrant teens are increasingly graduating from high school without legal protections such as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals. Despite the uncertainty, these students are turning to their networks and one another to push ahead and pursue higher education.
In early 2018, Omar Helalat was a student at SUNY Albany about to graduate and start an internship in New York City. Today, Helalat has been in Immigration and Customs Enforcement detention for over a year. It's all because of a strange quirk in US immigration law related to Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals recipients.
Frances Hui, a student in Emerson College from Hong Kong, is proud of her city's tradition of democratic rule and independent spirit. She penned a column for her college newspaper talking about her identity and received backlash from fellow students.
A recent scandal highlighted the unfairness of the admissions process at elite colleges. But there's another way that these selective universities are keeping out students without the "right" socioeconomic background — by accepting a very low number of students from community colleges.
As California implemented a ban on using race in college admissions 10 years ago, University of California, Irvine started aggressively recruiting talented students in Latino communities. Since then, the percentage of Latino students on-campus tripled.
In the next few months, a decision is expected in a case involving Harvard University and alleged discrimination against Asian American student applicants. But the University of California system is also facing a similar lawsuit — with allegations that administrators are considering race in admissions even though California bans the practice. A scandal is also raising larger questions about merit in college admissions and who has unfair advantage.
Often, migrant teens have to work to pay for their own rent or help with family expenses. High school can be overwhelming. Rusdale High School, just for immigrant students 16 or older, accommodates their needs to help them achieve.