Monday, May 17, 2010
I came to this country when I had just turned fourteen. I carried with me few things: the memories of friends and loved ones left behind and a few personal dreams and ambitions. I relied on one phrase: “Sorry, I don’t speak English.” After weeks of crying myself to sleep, I found myself surrounded by new friends and teachers who welcomed me and believed in my abilities. After four years of hard work, I became the first person in my family to graduate from high school, yet it was a bittersweet accomplishment. After high school graduation, I had to choose between pursuing college in Mexico and fighting for a future in the United States. I’m American. I stayed to fight.
I paid my way through college without any financial aid, working at a sunglass store on the beach as my friends enjoyed their vacations.
Years later, I am the first in my family to graduate from college. I dream of being a lawyer one day, and defending the causes of liberty and justice in this country before the Supreme Court. All of this, and more, is possible if we can pass the DREAM Act together. Join us.
■Graduate of California State University of Northridge, B.A. in Chican@ Studies
■Founding member of Dreams To Be Heard, a support and advocacy group at California State University of Northridge
■Co-‐founder of Dream Team Los Angeles, a youth-‐led organization of students, educators, and community members seeking to empower immigrant youth
■Testified at the California state capitol on the barriers faced by undocumented youth
■Testified in Congress on the urgent need for the DREAM Act
Facebook: Lizbeth Mateo
Country of Origin: Mexico
Current City: Los Angeles
link to http://www.thedreamiscoming.com/2010/05/17/lizbeth-mateo/