Five Brookdale students are hoping to have a Summer of Dreams.
The Triumph Brewing Company and the Immigration Committee of Greater Red Bank Women’s Initiative held a Cinco de Mayo event to help the students raise money to travel to Mexico, where they were each born, to do ethnographic research for future documentaries and academic presentations.
“DACA youth fought very hard to keep Advance Parole, which makes it possible for them to leave the country under specific conditions. Our students can go to Mexico because of the political efforts of DACA youth,” said Assistant Professor Ashley Zampogna-Krug, a history professor and adviser to the Dreamers+ club.
The students will also partake in immersive language and cultural classes. This unique study abroad opportunity will allow students to reunite with their families after separations of 10 or more years.
“This trip presents an opportunity to reconnect with the family I left 17 years ago. Although returning is both exciting and frightening, I think of it as an essential step for us to continue to grow as individuals,” said Dreamer Deysi Perez.
The program is among only two in the country that provides the opportunity to travel abroad for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients. DACA is an administrative relief that protects immigrant youth who came to the United States when they were children from deportation.
The cost of the trip is $3,575 per student. Triumph Brewing Company, [email protected], located at 1 Bridge Avenue, Red Bank, donated all proceeds from a special May 5 event to support the students. Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter MV Caldera performed at the brewery during the event. The Venezuelan star performed an evening of Latin pop music.
Donations can still be made to this effort by going to https://www.gofundme.com/f/summer-of-dreams-2022 or with a check payable to the Brookdale Community College Foundation (Mexico study abroad).