Define American

Using the power of story to transcend politics and shift the conversation around citizenship

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ALL STORIES

  • I am a DREAMER...well almost...

    | Anonymous

    Meet Gabriela. A DREAMER... well almost... She missed the age-at entry requirement by a couple of months.

    After reading her story, don't you think she more than deserves a shot too?

    "I, Gabriela Monico, hereby declare as follows: My name is Gabriela Monico. I am a resident of California. I was born in San Salvador, El Salvador. I came to the United States in November 2005 on…

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  • Done Dreaming

    | Esmy Jimenez

    My name is Esmy Jimenez. I was raised in a small town in Washington State known for agriculture and friendly people. I graduated from the local high school as the Senior Class President. I was in National Honor Society and enrolled in all the AP classes my school provided. I even ran on the cross country team and (attempted) to play tennis. On weekends I worked for a catering company…
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  • No Papers Necessary.

    | Anonymous

    My name is Pat. My first "American" family member got to these shores in 1621. His name is William Claiborne and there is a plaque dedicated to him in the church at Jamestown. However, the other half of my family is Irish. The Irish side of my family, while I am not certain, very likely arrived here without any papers since they fled here during the famine. So, in…

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  • I am an American, but I live in the shadows...

    | Anonymous

    In 1998, I met my immigrant husband in Chicago while I was in AmeriCorps and going to school. By that time, he had been in the US for almost 10 years--he had earned his GED, learned English, and moved up from his original position as dishwasher to become a kitchen manager. We fell in love. In 2002, we got married in his hometown in Mexico. We were told that petitioning…
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  • I Teach Americans. So What?

    | Anonymous

    While sitting at a scholarship pageant, I remember how an idyllic teenage girl explained that her dream was to become a teacher. I was a cynical teen in those days and so I rolled my eyes as her sweet, but very breathy voice tinkled the words, "I believe the children are our future. Teach them well and let them lead the way." I had to chew on the sides of…
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  • My rich immigrant background

    | Tina Rizkallah

    On my father's side I am a 3rd generation American. My great-parents immigrated from Italy in 1903. On my mother's side, our family came from Spain, through Mexico, then settled in the Provincia de Nueva Mexico in the Kingdom of New Spain - what is now know as the State of New Mexico, during the Reconquista. We've been here since before there even was a United States of America! I…
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  • My rich immigrant background

    | Tina Rizkallah

    On my father's side I am a 3rd generation American. My great-parents immigrated from Italy in 1903. On my mother's side, our family came from Spain, through Mexico, then settled in the Provincia de Nueva Mexico in the Kingdom of New Spain - what is now know as the State of New Mexico, during the Reconquista. We've been here since before there even was a United States of America! I…
    Continue Reading »
  • My rich immigrant background

    | Tina Rizkallah

    On my father's side I am a 3rd generation American. My great-parents immigrated from Italy in 1903. On my mother's side, our family came from Spain, through Mexico, then settled in the Provincia de Nueva Mexico in the Kingdom of New Spain - what is now know as the State of New Mexico, during the Reconquista. We've been here since before there even was a United States of America! We…
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  • American Is Supporting Immigration Reform Now.

    | April Vargas

    My father immigrated to America when he was 11 years old. My maternal grandmother came to this country in her twenties. They contributed to the United States through their work, the taxes they paid and the values they taught their families. The same is true today. We need immigration reform that respects and strengthens families, encourages civic engagement and provides equal educational and career opportunities for all. America can't wait.
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  • Don't Be A Sucker

    | Anonymous

    Here's a video contribution to what it means to be an American.
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