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Eastern Hosts ‘Immigration Week' for under-documented students

Published on October 24, 2022

Eastern Hosts ‘Immigration Week' for under-documented students

Immigration Week.
Students attend Eastern's first Immigration Week.

The office of University Opportunity Programs (UOP) hosted an event-filled "Immigration Week" from Oct. 11–Oct. 13. In support of recipients of Eastern's TheDream.US scholarship, the week featured a career workshop, a panel about the current state of DACA, one-on-one meetings with an immigration attorney, and a film screening.

Hosted by the Office of Career Success, the career workshop featured interview prep and resume reviews, and highlighted how involvement in the TheDream.US scholarship can aid under-documented students in their job search process.

Attorney Dan Berger from Curran, Berger & Kludge, an immigration law firm, updated students on the current state of immigration and the recent Oct. 5 ruling on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. The ruling is the latest in the legal battle against the 2012 executive order, signed by President Barack Obama, that grants temporary protected status to undocumented youth who were brought to the United States as children.

Dan Berger.
Attorney Dan Berger

The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed a lower court's ruling against the program that maintains the creation of DACA as unlawful. Despite this, the ruling keeps protections in place for current DACA holders but refuses new applicants. The ruling, for now, leaves the future of DACA uncertain until lower courts review the Biden Administration’s revisions of the program.

After Berger's update, students met with him to ask questions about the ruling. "Some students said that it was extremely helpful,” said Chris Ambrosio, director of UOP. “It even led to students scheduling consultations with Berger after the presentation.”

In collaboration with Eastern’s Freedom Club, the culminating event of Immigration Week was a screening of a film by Eastern alumna Charlotte Pacheco ’22. Titled “Home Is,” the four-episode miniseries provides an inside look at the under-documented college experience. Pacheco spent spring 2020 to fall 2021 collaborating with four other Eastern students to develop, write and produce the project.

Students who attended the viewing were able to discuss the themes of the docuseries and the aspects they related to. Freedom Club President Luis Flores-Gomez said, “I was happy to hear the opinion of our club members during the showing, especially those that were a part of its production! I was also happy to see many of our dedicated club members showing off their acting skills in the film project, so giving the opportunity to their peers to see them in a project like this was great.”

Speaking to Eastern’s first Immigration Week, Ambrosio said, “This was a big milestone for our office; it was the first time we did a week centered around (a theme). Last year this office (was new), so now, it's huge to be able to have a full staff to put events like this on.”

Written by Katherine Escalante