$10k Scholarship Finalist

In college, it was my immigration status that inspired and motivated me to create a visible community in support of students like myself. I learned how to become an advocate and established a safe space for undocumented immigrants. As a sophomore, I restored the John Jay DREAMers Club and served as the Secretary and later, Vice President. I hosted Know Your Rights Workshops to inform other students about the new policies regarding Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival (DACA) renewal. I helped organize the first Undocumented Immigrant Resource Fair, an event that was nearly canceled because we faced the possibility of a raid by Immigration and Customs Enforcement on the students in attendance. Despite the threat, I persisted and arranged for security protection from our College Public Safety for the event. Together with allies, I advocated for the creation of a Center at the college to provide information and support for undocumented students and their families. I met with Karol Mason, our college President, and the Board of Trustees to emphasize the importance of this Center. By sharing my story, I came to accept my undocumented identity. As a Chinese undocumented, low income, female, immigrant, who once felt overlooked, I have now amassed a community of support for marginalized persons like myself and have created a space for discussions around these issues with the goal of creating concrete solutions at a national level.

Creating the first Immigrant Student Success Center at the City University of New York is an example of what I have been able to achieve and contribute towards without a law degree. I strive to further develop this type of support upon my completion of law school. A legal education will allow me to provide empathetic advocacy in the future for communities facing obstacles similar to mine. My immigration journey has been filled with obstacles while transforming my life in a positive way. My personal and professional experiences demonstrate my commitment to better my circumstances and those of others similarly situated. I will continue to bring my diverse perspective to enrich the conversation and create an impact on issues around immigration reform, poverty, and the inclusivity of marginalized persons in our country.

As an undocumented immigrant, I am ineligible for federal aid to help pay for my legal education. With $10,000, my first year of law school will be fully covered by this scholarship and my merit-based scholarship from the law school. I will not have to worry about the financial burden of paying for my first year. Instead, I can strive to be successful in my first year by concentrating on my courses and studying. My first-year grades will determine my law school experience because I plan to do clinical work with the school’s Immigrant and Non-Citizen Rights clinic. In addition, I can focus on looking for summer internships with non-profit organizations to continue my work and farther my experience in provide culturally sensitive bilingual legal services to one of the most marginalized communities in the world.

My career goal is to be an advocate and a voice for marginalized communities with my degree.

CUNY School of Law is the best law school for public interest, an affordable option, and their motto is “Law in the Service of Human Needs.” My goal being an advocate and a voice for the marginalized communities start with a school that invest in their public interest students. CUNY Law will provide me with the skills and opportunity I need to continue a public interest path.

Thank you to my family for supporting me and being my rock. Thank you to Prof. José Luis Morín, Dr. Isabel Martínez, and Nancy Yang at John Jay College, CUNY for believing my dreams of helping undocumented students and helping me become a social justice warrior. Thank you Dr. Jodie Roure for accepting me into the Ronald H. Brown family and helping me with my law school applications. Thank you to all my internship supervisors for preparing me for law school and giving me the opportunity to work with low-income communities.

Winning this scholarship would mean having a financial burden lifted from me. Law school is expensive and my focus should not be on how to pay for law school. I want my focus to be on my education and how I can continue helping others through my summer internship at a non-profit organization.

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