My name is Gustavo Madrigal and I am undocumented. I came to this country at the age of 9 and have lived here for over 11 years. Despite the fact that I’ve lived in Georgia most of my life, the state and its public higher education system has closed its doors to me.
In 2007, the University System of Georgia’s Board of Regents effectively barred most undocumented students from public higher education by stripping away in-state tuition waivers. In 2010, they added insult to injury by outright banning us from the top five research universities in the state. They made higher education in Georgia unattainable because they recognize that as a college-educated Latino I, and my peers, would be a threat to their power--even more so as a college-educated Latino committed to justice for my immigrant community.
As a co-founder and member of the Georgia Undocumented Youth Alliance (GUYA) and a student at Freedom University, my commitment to social justice and education for all has been a long and hard struggle--but it is finally paying off. I have been accepted to study at Hampshire College in western Massachusetts and have been awarded their most prestigious scholarship. Unfortunately, it is not enough to relieve the financial burden of attending a top college as an undocumented student.
I am reaching out to you to help me make up the difference so that I can attend college. I know that this is a huge request, so in exchange, I promise to dedicate my time and work at Hampshire College toward the fight for social justice for immigrants and for all.