Thursday, April 18, 2024

First Lady invites DREAMer as guest to State of the Union

Ana Zamora, DREAMer SOTU

Last night’s State of the Union address featured a narrative centered on tax reform, trade, national security, climate change and, of course, immigration reform. To drive home President Obama’s many talking points, the First Lady invited Ana Zamora, a Texas college student and DREAMer, to join her as a guest for the event.

“My parents brought me to the United States before my first birthday, 20 years ago,” Zamora penned in a letter to the President, thanking him for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. “As with any other DREAMer, my parents came to this country with a dream of a better future for their children.”

Zamora’s story of benefitting from the President’s 2012 action to grant temporary status to children who grew up in the U.S. clearly touched the Obamas, but more clearly was a symbol of a large and growing group of young immigrants who may continue to benefit from similar such executive actions on immigration. Today, her life has fundamentally changed in the only country she has ever called home, and her family are among the millions of people potentially eligible for the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents program the President announced last November.

“The United States is my country,” she wrote. “It is where I grew up, took my first steps, learned to read, write, play, graduated from high school and will graduate from college…I am finally a person in the United States.” Ana plans to pursue a masters degree in business administration while mentoring students in situations similar to hers, upon her graduation from college.

The White House