Internship opportunity for undocumented

Felicity Tomisaka, Reporter

Bakersfield College is giving its undocumented students the opportunity to participate in the 2016 Dream Summer, sponsored by Lorena Lara, community organizer for Faith in Action of Kern County.

The Dream Summer, as described by Lara, is a ten-week internship program that happens throughout the United States. Through these internships, participants are able to receive a $5,000 leadership award for completion and participation in the program. The goal of the program is for students to engage with the social justice concerns within various communities. Some of the topics covered are health, deportation, and mass incarnation. Participants are also invited to discuss any issues concerning immigration rights.

Lara, who participated in the Dream Summer as an undocumented student herself in 2012, said, “It was an incredible experience. It was my first paid internship and it gave me great skills around community organizing, something that I am still doing at this moment.”

Lara highly encourages all undocumented BC students to apply for this opportunity.

Jeannie Parent, English for Multilingual Students Department, said, “four of dreamers went to this conference.”

Anna Poetker, philosophy professor, said, “We used to take the dreamers to the conference, hosted by UCLA, before the DACA.”

About 1,000 people consisted of students, faculty, and family come together. They have a keynote speaker who discuses immigrant issues and policies then we broke into the afternoon workshops that tailored to undocumented students. There was a workshop for educators that showed us how to help our students fill out the Dream Act and DACA. For students they give legal advice, information on transferring, even help with mental health issues. Parents learn how to help their high school students make that transition into college. They even have a LBGT for undocumented students who are dealing with a dual closet. What people don’t realize is that Korean’s make approximately six percent of undocumented students. Parent also said, “ The feed back I have gotten from our students saying they were so glad to know they weren’t alone or the only ones going through this.”