Thao Ma

B.A Psychology, MN Chemistry
San Francisco State University, 2023

The educational challenges I faced ranged from status limitations to accessibility. As an undocumented student, I often felt disappointed when applying for an internship since many of them required a social security number. Since I don’t have one, I always had to withdraw from such internships. Furthermore, as an undocumented pre-med student, I can’t utilize the advice given to me by professors and upper classmates—who are documented and can go through a traditional pathway to internship and opportunities. Fortunately, since being a program participant of Pre-Health Dreamers, I don’t withdraw myself from internships anymore. Instead, I push myself to question the organization about its eligibility and requirements. I also find myself more confident in achieving my dream and seeing the reality of my goal being carved. 

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Nashelit Ochoa

B.S Biology, MN Psychology and Health Human Humanities
Chestnut Hill College

At Pre-Health Dreamers (PHD), I found a community of friends and supporters. Nowhere else have I been able to speak of my status without fear, and nowhere else have I received the same level of acceptance and encouragement. Coming from a campus with scarce resources for the undocumented community, I often felt alone and disoriented on how to navigate entering dental school, especially since I lacked the safe space to speak of my status. PHD pushed me to believe in my voice and continue finding opportunities. Thanks to them I built my understanding of pursuing dentistry, expanded my network, worked on my first research project, presented at my first conference, attained a friend that I hope will last me a lifetime, and am finding new opportunities through their dental group. I am extremely grateful for Yadi, Angeles, and my friend Andrea. I couldn't envision my college journey without them and PHD. I'm happy I applied to PHD's PEEP program and grateful to have been accepted.

Karen Cruz-Ruiz

B.S Public Health 

Pre-Health Dreamers has inspired me to pursue various routes of healthcare, including Public Health and Physician Assistant Studies. Through this organization, I was able to meet various individuals who, despite barriers set in place, have defied all odds by going above and beyond in their professional lives. Prior to finding PHDreamers, I knew very few individuals who understood the challenges of our prospective status. Now, I have a large community of people who I can and do reach out to for assistance and support. What PHDreamers has done for me is provide me with the necessary financial, professional, and personal information needed to one day achieve my aspirations of providing quality care for immigrant communities and assisting marginalized birthing people through the maternal and child health sector of Public Health. Truthfully, I was reassured that there are no limitations to my professional desires and that I am capable of achieving all my propositions regardless of immigration status– and as an undocumented latina woman, that means the world.

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