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Immigrants Of The Day: Miguel Blas-Matus of Mexico, Yulkendy Valdez of Dominican Republic, and Jorge Muņoz of Colombia

by Kevin R. Johnson

Miguel Blas-Matus (Mexico)

Our Immigrant of the Day is Miguel Blas-Matus who grew up with seven siblings in a one-room, dirt-floor house in his homeland of Juchitan, Oaxaca, Mexico. He completed medical school in Mexico but came to the United States and had to face many immigration and professional challenges.  Click the link above to see how Miguel persevered and is pursuing his medical education in the United States.

March 25, 2009 | Permalink

Yulkendy Valdez (Dominican Republic)

Until four years ago, Yulkendy Valdez, now age 14, lived with her family in a town south of Santo Domingo in the Dominican Republic. With hopes for a better life, her family came to the United States when she was 10 and settled in the St. Louis, Missouri area.

Yulkendy Valdez had to learn English from scratch.  She did.  Last week, Yulkendy, now an eighth-grader,  won first place in the Post-Dispatch Spelling Bee. She will travel to Washington, D.C., in May to participate in the Scripps National Spelling Bee.  Keep in mind that she has only spoken English for four years.

Hat tip to Jim Hacking of Hacking Law Practice!

March 24, 2009 | Permalink

Jorge Muņoz (Colombia)

Our Immigrant of the Day, Jorge Muņoz, is a school bus driver who, in his spare time, feeds the down-and-out arroz con pollo (see this CNN report) in Jackson Heights, Queens.  His nonprofit, An Angel in Queens, feeds the needy of all-backrgrounds who have come from around the world.

Muņoz was born in Colombia.  His father died when he was young. To suport Muņoz and his sister, his mother came to New York and worked as a nanny. Muņoz came to the United States in the 1980s, obtained legal residency in 1987, and later became a U.S. citizen.  According to CCN, "as an immigrant, he identifies with many of the men he feeds."

Hat tip to Dan Kowalski!

March 22, 2009 | Permalink

These posts were orginally posted on the ImmigrationProf Blog here, here and here.

About The Author

Kevin R. Johnson is currently Dean, Professor of Law and Chicana/o Studies, and the Mabie-Apallas Public Interest Law Chair holder at the University of California at Davis. He is also one of the editors of ImmigrationProf Blog.

The opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect the opinion of ILW.COM.