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ASU: School of Transborder Studies


Current Student Describing the department


Carlos


What does Transborder Studies mean to you?


a. Transborder studies as an academic field is very close to my heart, as is the school of transborder studies. As a queer Mexican immigrant, the transborder studies discipline has allowed me to study individuals like me and learn more about my own history in a state where ethnic studies were originally frowned upon despite the deeply bi cultural roots of Arizona. Additionally, the transborder studies discipline has given me insight into the causes of my own migration. As undocumented youth you always think about why your family migrated, why you had to leave and what were the conditions of your home that caused you to leave. Why would people give up their home and family? What caused my family to give that up? Transborder studies has allowed me to answer those questions for myself and gave me closure, I was able to learn about the geopolitical environment of my home country that resulted in my exit migration, so knowing the why has become really important for me as I get older.



How does your education in ASU's School of Transborder Studies translate to your current pursuits?


I am a Transborder studies major with a concentration in immigration policy, and

I am currently applying to law school so that I can one day become an immigration attorney. In STS we learn about migration theories, migration history, the relationship of Latin America with the United States as well as binational U.S/Mexico relations, so most of what we learn in the school has direct applications to any immigration policy or international relations related field. For me it gave me a very in depth view of how intertwined the U.S and Mexico really are as well as an in depth view of immigration policy which are directly related to what I want to do as an immigration attorney. It gave me a very good foundation for law school and the law field.



Is there anything about the School of Transborder Studies that you personally connect to?

I connect with the school a lot as a whole and what it has built at ASU. Above all else the School of Transborder studies has built a little family, at many institutions you feel lost because Latinos are the minority in many higher education institutions. In the School of Transborder studies you hear professors speak Spanish or Portuguese, the students are speaking it, you know everyone by name and people understand you culturally. I could have meetings with professors in Spanish if I wanted to, sometimes even classes would shift between Spanish and English and I think that's really amazing. It felt like a piece of home, and everyone was constantly code switching. I loved my time there, because I truly felt comfortable studying and learning in a space with other people like me. I am grateful to all my professors, Patricia our counselor and the director for creating a department that seems like a little piece of Latin America at ASU and for making us all feel like we belong.





Jahaziel


What does Transborder Studies mean to you?


Transborder Studies to me represents the educational framework of my own

experiences growing up at home. The traditional Mexican household is encapsulated in my own life yet also in the classes that the School of Transborder Studies offers. Transborder Studies is my heritage, my identity, and my future as a Latinx community member.



How does your education in ASU's School of Transborder Studies translate to your current pursuits?


By learning about the history of my ethnicity, the dynamics of my culture, and the

close-knit community that I have belonged to, this all translates to my own pursuits because the prouder I am of my own identity, my motivation to succeed in life is strengthened. I want to be able to give back to the community that has given so much to me, and the School of Transborder Studies has given me the tools to do so.



Is there anything about the School of Transborder Studies that you personally connect to?


Walking into the School of Transborder Studies is like walking into my own

home. The neon green walls remind me of my own neon orange home. The artwork reminds me of my heritage. And the cafecitos con pan dulce that the School of Transborder Studies offes speaks for itself. When in Transborder Studies classes, I feel like I am among my own community and I feel welcomed.





Recent Alums


Sonia


What does Transborder Studies mean to you?


To me, Transborder Studies means so much. Choosing this major created a family like community for me in the past 3 years. It helped me connect to my roots and my community. It means the world to be able to learn a perspective that isn’t provided in primary education.



How does your education in ASU's School of Transborder Studies translate to your current pursuits?


My education in the School of Transborder Studies has helped me in

strengthening my need to become an immigration lawyer. Everything I learned has helped me push through to reach the end goal of helping my community. It gave me the base materials to aid the immigrant community.



Is there anything about the School of Transborder Studies that you personally connect to?


I connected to the people I’ve met in the School of Transborder Studies. I finally

felt surrounded by people who were like me, in mindsets and culture. I also connected in one way or another to the material I learned. It helped me better understand my community.





Angelica


What does Transborder Studies mean to you?


To me, transborder studies is defined by an exploration of my own experience as

a Mexican-American woman whose life occupies a variety of intersections. Transborder Studies, unlike any other field of study, provided me with the opportunity to grow closer to my heritage, and to appreciate the complexity and richness of transborder communities like my own through community-centered research, internships and service projects. As a first-generation student and member of a mixed-status family, pursuing an education in Transborder Studies enabled me to leverage my perspectives and experiences within institutional settings where voices like mine have not always been uplifted.



How does your education in ASU's School of Transborder Studies translate to your current pursuits?


I am currently working with organizations focused on advocating for Latinx issues, increasing Latinx political power and of creating a pipeline of Latinx leaders. My education and research pursuits within ASU's School of Transborder Studies equipped me with an in-depth understanding of the diverse issues and barriers faced by the Latinx community, specifically by Mexican-Americans and the immigrant community in Arizona. This educational experience empowers me to provide valuable, intersectional insights and design solutions for our community's most pressing problems at work and in my personal life.



Is there anything about the School of Transborder Studies that you personally connect to?


I personally connect most to the professors at the School of Transborder Studies.

My professors led with empathy, curiosity and intentionality-- they actively created an environment where students felt compelled to engage and to show up as their authentic selves by facilitating critical discussions and ensuring all perspectives were heard and treated with dignity. Furthermore, professors were invested in the wellbeing of students both in and out of the classroom. These efforts create a sense of community among students and faculty that is unlike any other community at ASU.





Lorena


What does Transborder Studies mean to you?


The School of Transborder Studies broadened my knowledge and perspective on

the Southwest North American Region. Transborder Studies entails a duality of identity and culture that permeates throughout the continent. Its complex history and policies, old and new, shape how we view this border today. Borders are constructed by society with the intent of separation, but that separation cannot stop the transmission of culture, language, ideas, oral histories, folklore, etc. The School of Transborder studies empowered me with tools to be competitive in any professional setting and taught me how to make a positive impact in our communities. The education I received was/is priceless as it combined my cultural values and street smarts, which in turn, allowed me to see my true potential.



How does your education in ASU's School of Transborder Studies translate to your current pursuits?


My education with the School of Transborder Studies furthered my desire to

attend law school. In order to understand the complexities of law, one must have a foundational understanding of the history and culture of the communities they intend to serve. My major allowed me to have one of the most relevant degrees available to those pursuing law in the Southwest North American Region. The School of Transborder Studies also provided me with exceptional one-on-one advising, a supportive learning environment, access to world renowned professors and incredible opportunities to assist my community. My future success will be directly tied to my time in the School of Transborder studies.


Is there anything about the School of Transborder Studies that you personally connect to?


EVERYTHING. The School of Transborder Studies profoundly changed my life.

I never learned my history. History in public schools was about America’s conquest which professed the ideology that I should be grateful to live in a nation as great as this. That I should be grateful that my ancestors were marginalized and forced to break their backs working the fields so that I might have better opportunities not afforded to them based on the color of their skin. I was able to thrive in an environment that centered around my identity and history. Most if not all of my professors were of a Latinx background. For the first time in my life my professors’ tongues did not stumble with the pronunciation of my name. For the first time I felt at home in an educational setting with peers, staff and faculty that looked like me, and with whom I shared similar experiences and culture. I always felt safe and loved with my Transborder family.



Made in conjunction with Irasema Coronado, Mary Hess, Patricia Corona, ASU School of Transborder Studies.


Front Image credit to ASU (attained on September 4th, 2020):

Kraklio, Kirsten, and Karin Valentine. “ASU Grad Uses Spanish, Leadership Skills to Support Community amid Pandemic.” ASU Now: Access, Excellence, Impact, ASU News, 5 Aug. 2020, asunow.asu.edu/20200805-asu-grad-uses-spanish-leadership-skills-support-community-amid-pandemic.




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