Forward For Immigrants is an advocacy project driven by young people from communities in Colorado who are members of the 2020 Denver Youth Leadership Academy. Based on our lived experiences, we recognize the need to highlight the stories of immigrant community members in order to emphasize their perseverance and courage.
During a time of increased polarization, it is important to generate a greater sense of awareness of the challenges, barriers, and aspirations of immigrants. As we begin to address the existing inequities in both our state and country, we must first begin by taking the time to learn and understand the stories of our immigrant community members and allies. We not only aspire for Forward for Immigrants to be a storytelling safe haven, but also a place where community members can access reliable resources and information. In today’s world- it may seem that we are more divided than we actually are, but with our hearts and minds open, we’ll find that we share more than what divides us. We can find our common ground through stories beyond borders.
My name is Marisa Beltran.
I am a first-generation student, and the first born in my family. I graduated from Grand Canyon University in December of 2017 with my Bachelors Degree in Government with an Emphasis in Legal Studies and a Minor in Psychology. I have been working for Criminal Defense and Immigration lawyers since 2018 and discovered a passion for advocating those whose voices are not heard. I am now preparing to apply for law school in Denver. Working with Young Invincibles has now allowed me to create another project towards advocating for immigrants.
As a first generation child, I have seen the struggles first hand and know how hard it can be living in this country. I know my family would have loved a simple, easily accessible website, when they first arrived, so I hope this can help you all.
Hi! My name is Mariah Guerrero and I am a first-generation college student who graduated from Regis University in May 2019 with my Bachelor’s in Politics and Spanish. I will be pursuing a Master’s in International Studies and Human Rights at the University of Denver in the fall. I have worked as legislative aide for the past two years. During this time, my passion for public policy and serving others has truly grown. At the Capitol, I am very interested in progressive policies focused on immigration, education, LGBT rights, housing, and healthcare. I am grateful to be a part of the Young Invincibles cohort to connect with other like-minded and determined young people who strive to make a positive and lasting impact in their community.
Hi! My name is Mildred Gonzalez and I am a recent graduate from Strive Prep-Rise. This fall I will be a first generation college student at Colorado State University with a major in Political Science and Women’s Studies. As I continue to further my education I hope to become an immigration lawyer and become a resource for my community. As a first generation American I was able to see the challenges my parents and family have had to go through as immigrants from Mexico. Their experiences have pushed me to fight for equity and create a platform where others could share their stories. Working alongside with Young Invincibles and my group has been such an incredible experience as I have acquired much knowledge from every single one of them. In the future I hope to attain a position of power, so that I am able to create first -hand change.
Hi! My name is Jason Cui and I am a rising Junior at Fairview High School in Boulder, Colorado. I am a passionate student and biomedical research intern. I spend lots of time being the science nerd I am and love reading. Outside of academics, I’m also heavily involved in community service. I run a non-profit aimed at helping low-income students achieve academic success and inspiration to pursue a career in STEM. I also enjoy working with youth advocacy groups such as Young Invincibles as well as volunteering for organizations in my community that help the disadvantaged.
My name is Noelie Lisvette Quintero. I am a first-generation high school graduate and a first-generation college student. I have worked as a file clerk for a law firm specializing in immigration, civil rights, and criminal defense for roughly 3 years.
I have always been aware of the inequalities immigrants like my grandmother face as well as the Latinx community. Apart from my personal experiences, I have witnessed firsthand the unspoken injustices immigrant communities face, their silent cries, as well as the huge disconnection immigrants have to reliable information.
I am a firm believer in knowledge is power. I believe that in providing this information and resources will benefit both the immigrant community and our allies. I truly hope that this platform could offer some help and or resolution to those viewing it.