Meet a Fellow: Vanessa Luna
September 5, 2019
Meet Vanessa, a 2019 Roddenberry Fellow
Vanessa Luna is the Co-Founder and Chief Program Officer of ImmSchools. She immigrated to the United States at the age of 10 from Lima, Peru. Growing up undocumented and as a former DACAmented teacher, she has experienced first hand the resilience of undocumented families and the high need to create safe spaces in our education system. ImmSchools is an immigrant-led nonprofit organization that partners with K-12 school districts and educators to support the unique needs of the undocumented and immigrant community in order for them to reach their fullest potential. Vanessa and the ImmSchools team are working to make the education system an effective source of communicating, educating and engaging the undocumented and immigrant community.
“As educators, it is critical that we are prepared to properly serve undocumented students and their families to ensure schools are safe havens for the immigrant community. Through ImmSchools programming, educators are equipped with knowledge about the rights of immigrant and undocumented families, adopt concrete school policies and classroom strategies to create an immigrant friendly culture and curriculum, and students and parents increase their access to local resources and knowledge of their rights and power inside and outside of school.”
During the 2019 Fellowship
ImmSchools’ project focuses on achieving long-term impact for undocumented and immigrant students and families by providing ongoing professional learning for educators, collaborating with local immigrant organizations to provide workshops and resources for undocumented and immigrant students and families within schools and advocating for the passage of immigrant-friendly policies in K-12 school districts. This type of holistic approach will allow undocumented and immigrant students to feel safe in school and have greater access to opportunities, transforming their educational experience and empowering them to reach their full potential.
“We cannot ignore the undeniable intersection and impact that our students’ race, socioeconomic, and immigration status has in their educational experience. The current education system is not built to support students who come from low-income communities, are people of color, and immigrants. I recognize this injustice and realize the role we all must play in the fight towards educational equity and immigrant justice.”
Ways to get involved:
Follow us on twitter, instagram and facebook: @immschools
Donate to support our efforts: https://www.paypal.com/paypalme2/ImmSchools
Visit our website to learn more: immschools.org
Learn more about Vanessa and ImmSchools here: https://www.immschools.org/