Skip to main content

All ACES for DREAMers -- A Winning Hand for Undocumented Students

 All ACES for DREAMers -- A Winning Hand for Undocumented Students

Since Fall 2012, the DREAMERs Task Force has been organizing to support undocumented students at Cañada College. Our mission is to ensure access to higher education for all students, regardless of immigration status. Our ultimate goal: establish a permanent Undocumented Student Center at Cañada, both a public face for DREAMers with resources and information to assist those students, and also a community-building center for students who face stigma and fear of discovery / deportation.

Last year the DREAMers Task Force became a sub-committee of the Academic Committee for Equity and Success (ACES), and since that time we have accomplished a lot in our pursuit of equity for undocumented students. We have built a vibrant community of students, faculty, and staff; hosted exciting events, including an art workshop with local artist and activist Favianna Rodriguez;  and provided free legal assistance to dozens of DACA-eligible students.

Last semester, thanks to support from ACES, Task Force members visited other campuses in the Bay Area with Undocumented Student Centers to learn about best practices. The Undocumented Student Program at UC Berkeley inspired us to dream big. Their program began with one part time director, but now includes four full-time staff members: director, counselor, mental health provider and immigration attorney. The student leaders who run HEFAS (Higher Education for AB540 Students) at De Anza College taught us about the importance of empowering students as decision-makers and visionaries at every step along the way.

This semester, we invite you to join us as we work on a variety of fronts to implement our vision:
·         EOPS is reaching out to over 300 students who are currently registered as AB540 to offer support and grow our community.
·         BTO is working with specific student peer mentors to provide targeted mentoring and leadership development to student DREAMers.
·         The Learning Center and Building 9 staff are working to create a physical location for our Undocumented Student Center and distribute information across campus
·         The DREAMers Student Club is planning creative workshops for storytelling and community building
·         Our ACES Inquiry Group is working to collect student stories, assess our campus climate, and survey our students to learn more about their experience so that we can serve them better, build community and improve campus climate.

Here are ten ways to help support undocumented students on campus this semester:
1.    Join the DREAMers Task Force. Next meeting: 3-4:30 PM Thurs. Feb. 25 in 9-307.
2.    Join the ACES Inquiry project and consider helping us implement our DREAMers Inquiry Project this semester. (email
3.    Invite the DREAMers Student Club to come to your class and recruit new student members. Or, make an announcement about the next club meeting. (email
4.    Encourage students to engage in peer mentoring / BTO & make sure they know there is support for ALL students.
5.    Refer students to, to learn more about programs and services that they may be eligible for, including: financial aid and scholarships, free immigration legal assistance, DACA, AB540 and the California Dream Act.
6.    Develop curriculum relevant to the lives and experiences of immigrant students (we can help!). (You can help too!  Let us know if you’re already doing this so that we can share ideas.)
7.    Post a “Migration is Beautiful” Butterfly sticker or “I am an Unafraid Educator” poster on your door or in your office or work area.
8.    Donate to our DREAMers Program or Scholarship funds.
9.    Follow us on facebook:
10.  Learn more: “Dreaming Big: What Community Colleges Can Do to Help Undocumented Youth Achieve Their Potential”

To take action / For more information, email us at: or contact ACES:


Popular posts from this blog

Join us for Artistry in Fashion on Saturday, Sept. 28

Have you ever dreamed about being a fashion designer? Do you enjoy the fun and creativity that goes into designing beautiful clothing? If you are a fashionista – or even if you’re not, come join us at Cañada College on Saturday, Sept. 28 from 10 am to 4 pm for the 22nd annual Artistry in Fashion event.

Since 1991, the Cañada College Fashion Department has hosted Artistry in Fashion, bringing together fashion lovers, students, faculty, and premier local designers and fabric artists for an exciting day of fashion and creativity, all for the benefit of student scholarships and materials. Don’t miss a dazzling fashion show by esteemed fashion educator and Director of the Center for Pattern Design, Sandra Ericson. Learn what it takes to become a fashion designer from Cañada's acclaimed fashion instructors. You'll also have the opportunity to buy clothing, jewelry, and other fashions on sale from more than 60 local designers.

Admission is only $10 and benefits the Canada College Fashio…

Alaa Aissi Awarded Prestigious Scholarship

2014 Cañada Graduate Alaa Aissi has been awarded the Regents’ and Chancellor’s Scholarship from UC Berkeley. The scholarship is the most prestigious and the highest honor awarded by the university to an undergraduate. It attracts, retains, and graduates the most sought-after students in the world. After the pool of over 90,000 Cal applicants is thoroughly reviewed, only the top 1 percent of incoming students are invited to be interviewed by Berkeley faculty. From there only two hundred students receive the scholarship. Benefits of the scholarship include a Faculty Mentor, research fellowship opportunity, further networking with faculty and fellow scholars throughout their academic careers, along with a monetary award. Upon receiving this honor, Alaa expressed, “I am humbled by the opportunity to have received this scholarship and to be a part of the Regents’ and Chancellor¹s Scholars Association. I am looking forward to being lauded at the Chancellor¹s residence at this fall’s recept…

Learning English Led to a New Life for Redwood City’s Patricia Segura

After moving from Mexico five years ago, Patricia Segura knew she would have to master English to stay in the United States, find a job, and fulfill her goal of studying to become a nurse. But without command of the language, going to college seemed impossible.

“When I decided to stay in this country, I wanted to keep studying as I was doing in my country,” she said. “Learning English became a new short-term goal in my life. I wanted to study English in college but I had to start from the beginning.”

She began taking community-based English courses offered by Cañada College at Sequoia High School. Later she moved to John Gill Elementary School to take a course because her nephew was in the class. When she finished her course at John Gill, Segura’s professor helped her sign up for the first level of English as a Second Language at Cañada College.

“When I started at Cañada, my goal was to learn English to find a job,” she said. “Now I'm pursuing my goal of becoming a nurse. The more I …