DACA lights a dark uncertain future

The DACA Promise is reaching the end during the Trump administration, Jin Park now faces deportation after winning life-changing scholarship. 

By Lee Villanueva, Staff Writer

The University of Oxford exceeds expectations offering famed scholarship to undocumented Jin Park, who now faces immediate deportation after mastering Harvard with honors.

Jin Park and his family migrated to the United States when he was seven and dwelled in New York City. He currently mastered in molecular and cellular biology and minored in migration and rights at Harvard. 

In 2012 when Barack Obama’s DACA was announced, it single handedly forever changed Parks uncertain future. The young prodigy recounted growing up in constant fear with his family and having to constantly be mindful of their surroundings. They had to keep their citizenship status quiet and feared encountering immigration agents. After DACA came into order, Park claims to have felt less vulnerable and protected from deportation from the only place he knew as home.

Amongst working at MIT as a cancer research assistant for integrative medicine, he has now been awarded the Rhodes Scholarship, which allows 32 individuals from the United States to study at Oxford. The scholarship was created in 1902 as to secure a way for diversity and inclusion of the scholastically gifted. 

Park is unable to celebrate such an accomplishment because, under the Donald Trump administration, fears reentry into the country upon graduation. 

The current administration has left over 800,000 young DACA recipients nationwide in fear of an uncertain deportation after graduation. The 2012 Presidential executive order created permits for people brought to the United States under 17, which was designed to be renewed indefinitely and in no way offer a path to citizenship. The Trump administration has opted to phase out the program and is no longer accepting DACA applications.

“I found out my legal status when, after applying for an internship at a hospital in Manhattan, the interviewer said, ‘sorry Jin we do not allow illegal aliens to take part in the program,’” Park said. 

Now the young Einstein is preparing for possible lawsuits that would allow him to enter the country. He goes on to state that the feelings of exclusion have played important roles and motivation in his life. 

The undocumented student does not have a U.S. passport, having no way to travel outside of the country knowing for certain what awaits him. As an immigrant in the United States, you learn the foundational lessons that your talents do not belong to you and that the fruits of your labor must be spread around Park reveals to the Harvard Gazette. 

California alone has 242,339 young people who received DACA status between 2012 and March 2017, according to the Migration Policy Institute. 

Officials estimate 72,300 undocumented students are enrolled in the state’s public colleges and universities.  Many of these demonized education seekers pose talents and knowledge that others do not. 

Life after graduation is a huge fear for many if not all the DACA students. They are our neighbors and have been for most of their lives and have assumed an American culture that is not existent in the regions they are from and to be cast out of a society where they can ultimately contribute into the direct advancement of the United States speaks volumes of making America first. 

“When I was accepted to Harvard,  my parents felt it was a validation of our lives here. For them this is why we came here, this is why we went through all the things we went through,” proclaimed Park. 

Throughout history we observe progression working together building the cultural foundation of us. Sometimes under great leaders but never alone, to rid the country of top educated talents is just plain old stupid.