Dania Maxwell – Expelled
“There is an estimated 1.7 million undocumented youth living in the United States. In Arizona, these youth live under the nation’s harshest immigration laws. Many have been in the public school system since childhood, however, when they finish high school and want to further their education, they face large legislative barriers.
In Arizona, undocumented students cannot receive in-state college tuition, and must pay higher, out-of-state fees. They are also unable to receive state and federal scholarships.
This story follows four undocumented youth at the crux of high school and college. ”
Isle, right, and her older sister, Carina Montes, wear their R.O.T.C. uniforms while completing their homework their bedroom in Phoenix, Arizona. They are two of an estimated 1.7 million undocumented youth living in the United States. Although they have been in the public school system since childhood, when they graduate the twelfth grade, legislation that applies to undocumented people will be a barrier to their further education. In Arizona, undocumented students cannot receive in-state college tuition, and must pay out-of-state fees. They also are unable to receive state and federal scholarships and are limited to private funds, which are dwindling, quickly.
Francisco Duran keeps his high school graduating cap and gown is folded in a box. Francisco wears the cap and gown during protests for immigrant rights. “I honestly feel like I’m a nobody. I mean I want to go to school and build a better future for myself, and my family, but I just can’t. Throughout my life we were never a wealthy family, which makes it twice as hard to go to school knowing that we don’t have the economic resources.”
Amy Thompson has been a Maricopa County Sheriff deputy for two years. She patrols the East Side of the Mesa area in Phoenix. Sheriff’s deputies have the duty to call immigration control when there is suspicion that someone is an undocumented immigrant.
Six days a week Francisco Duran, his father, Silvestre, and his mother, Maria, rise before the sun to wash new vehicles awaiting purchase at different car dealerships in the area. Together, on most days, they wash around 500 cars and are paid $300 between the three of them.
Francisco Duran scans the street from his window before stepping out to drive his mother to English class. He just blasted a post to his Facebook friends, warning of a Sheriff’s deputy on 35th and Grand Street, just a few blocks from his home on Phoenix’s west side. “Everywhere that us undocumented people go, we have the thought in back of our mind that we might get deported if we are stopped,”
The Phoenix city landscape, as seen from South Mountain Park, is a hotspot for tourists and locals alike. With a population of 1.6 million, Phoenix is the sixth-largest city in the United States.