UndocuAlly Training: How to Be a Better Ally

Collin Acevedo, Reporter

Collin Acevedo

The week of the 18-22 of October, Bakersfield College celebrated the fifth anniversary of Undocumented Student Action Week. With an event held each day to help support undocumented students. On Thursday the 21, an event was held for others to be a better ally to undocumented students. Led by Marcela Gamino who stated.”Our community has noticed what we need more of and we’re working towards bringing the resources towards campus.”

With the assistance of the Immigrants Rising Organization, whose mission is to empower undocumented young people to achieve educational and career goals. They presented how to help undocumented students with the appropriate actions to keep comfort, becoming a better ally so they can know that they are not alone.

Acknowledging the difficulties they face in the outside world, especially during the pandemic as many worked as front-line or essential workers. Those same people had issues getting the vaccine while also facing things like Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals actions or fear of Immigration and Customs Enforcement raids. 

With stereotypes and various disadvantages, there is a push to better benefit them now and make them as ready as they can be. Hoping and giving them a push towards pursuing higher education, with their statistics holding it as less than 25% of ‘traditional college age’ undocumented youth are attending college in California alone. With the help of Immigrant’s Rising, undocumented students can get the help they need, by knowing which scholarships they can apply for and assistance with the AB 540 form or the Dream Act. They also help provide careers that can be pursued,  giving the ability to learn about owning or developing a business.

With undocumented students facing grave issues which are hurting them, to end the seminar Gamino helped show how one would show their support, even if it may be in subtle gestures. Taking a pledge to help support commitment that all students have a right to have access to resources and higher education.