Category Archives: 1975 – 2000

Child Immigrant from Colombia Becomes PR Pro

                      Melissa Strozza was 5 years old when she and her family moved to the United States in the early 90´s. They were living in Cartagena, Colombia, but there was a tough situation in the 80´s and 90´s.  Colombia went through a big civil war, so jobs were hard to ... Read More »

A Family Effort For Tina Chen (Vietnam)

          Life could have been worse for me. I was thirteen when I got my first job, selling bread and vegetables for about two years. Because of the Vietnam war, there were few jobs, meaning, this was the only way I could support my family. I was the youngest of eight siblings; four brothers, four sisters. ... Read More »

An Artist Exploring Her Guatemalan Roots

              Evelyn was born in Quetzaltenango, Guatemala during the time of civil war. As a child, her mother stayed at home with the family and her father worked for someone trading Guatemalan currency into USD, often traveling to the Mexican border for work. Soon, however, word got out in her town of her father’s ... Read More »

A 15 Year Old Makes Her Passage By Boat (Vietnam)

              It was a spring afternoon in 1985. I had turned fifteen a few of months earlier and I had just entered the house after a day at high school. Food was on my mind; I’d skipped breakfast as usual. Mom was sitting on the bed in the corner, whispering to a woman I’d ... Read More »

Vietnamese Refugee Parents and 2nd Generation Identity

              Tracy Nguyen was born and raised in San Jose. Growing up with refugee parents from Vietnam largely defines who she is today: a driven community organizer with a creative, entrepreneurial spirit. Tracy received a B.A. in Media Studies and Ethnic Studies from UC Berkeley. Tracy’s story grapples with the meaning of the war ... Read More »

The Long Reach of Cambodia’s Tragic Killing Fields

Tiffany Tran tells a painful and riveting story with its roots in the “killing fields” of Cambodia under Pol Pot’s rule when millions of people were murdered. Her parents somehow survived the genocide and made it to the US. Tiffany speaks of being embarrassed of them as uneducated immigrants when she was growing up. Not until she grew up and ... Read More »

A Perilous Journey, Hard Work, and a Better Life (México)

I was determined that I would make a better life for my family, even if I had to risk my life. I come from a large, hard working family. By Mexican standards we were comfortable, but that comfort came with the price of constant hard work. We lived under the rule of a corrupt president, who took more and more ... Read More »

From Third to First (Colombia)

My name is Robert and I was just a teenager when I left. In my jean shorts, white tank top, and sandals I was young. 19 years old, alone, and full of dreams when I decided to come to the United States. I knew there was more opportunity for me here than the island in Colombia that I came from. ... Read More »

Pursuing the American Dream (México)

We saw cars stopping outside. We heard footsteps coming to the door. “Someones outside” I said “Es la migra!” we all yelled “Run!” another person said I was too late and the border patrol had got me. I, José Sonora(name changed), was born on March 8, 1979 in Coneto de Comonfort. I grew up in a pueblo, a town in ... Read More »

Gricelda’s Journey (México)

  “It’s time for me to leave, ” I told my mom with a broken heart.  She replied, “Is there anyway to get you to stay?” “I must do this for my daughter and you, in the long run it will benefit everyone” “Mija yo te puedo ayudar con la niña, y no te preocupes por mi. I can help ... Read More »

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