WASHINGTON IS JUST ONE SIGNATURE AWAY FROM OFFERING
FINANCIAL AID TO UNDOCUMENTED COLLEGE STUDENTS.
THIS WEEK - THE STATE LEGISLATURE PASSED THE CONTROVERSIAL
KXLY4'S KYLEE CRUZ IS LIVE IN STUDIO TONIGHT WITH
THE STORY OF A YOUNG WOMAN.
WHO FOUGHT TIRELESSLY TO GET THE BILL PASSED.
IT'S A VERY EMOTIONAL TIME FOR UNDOCUMENTED COLLEGE
STUDENTS LIKED ELENA CALDERON - WHO'S ADVOCATED FOR
THE DREAM ACT FOR THE LAST FOUR YEARS.
SHE SAYS THE LEGISLATURE'S ACTION IS A SIGN OF HOPE.
AND SHOWS THE STATE WANTS TO INVEST IN EDUCATION.
i was being carried by my dad because i was too little
to walk, i was only 3 years old
20 YEARS LATER - ELENA CALDERON STILL REMEMBERS THE
DAY SHE CAME TO AMERICA FROM MEXICO, FOR A BETTER
i remember looking up seeing the border patrol helicopter,
and my mom right away got her rosary beads and started
THE PRAYERS WORKED - THEY DIDN'T GET CAUGHT.
ELENA GREW UP MATTAWA AND WORKED IN THE FIELDS TO
PAY FOR COLLEGE -- SINCE SHE WASN'T ABLE TO GET FINANCIAL
that's like the first barrier to the education system,
right away you tell yourself i don't belong here,
i should go back to mexico, but it would be going
back to a country with a lot of violence
BUT SHE DIDN'T GO BACK.
SHE WORKED HARD AND GOT A DEGREE FROM EASTERN -- SHE'S
STILL THERE WORKING ON HER MASTERS.
as a student you go through the regular stress a student
goes through but on top of that, how am i going to
go to school, am i going to have to drop out this
quarter? Do i have to go to a community college
BUT THAT EXTRA STRESS - WON'T BE THERE ANYMORE.
THIS WEEK - THE WASHINGTON LEGISLATURE LIFTED THE
FINANCIAL BARRIERS FOR UNDOCUMENTED STUDENTS.
THE DREAM ACT EXPANDS COLLEGE FINANCIAL AID TO THOSE
BROUGHT TO THE STATE ILLEGALLY AS CHILDREN.
THE BILL REQUIRES UNDOCUMENTED STUDENTS TO HAVE A
HIGH SCHOOL DIPLOMA AND LIVE IN THE STATE FOR AT LEAST
we aren't criminals, my parents just came here for
a better future, and that's what we are doing, we
are trying to get an education
FOR UNDOCUMENTED STUDENTS LIKE ELENA, COLLEGE ISN'T
A DREAM ANYMORE, IT'S REALITY.
it was a teary eyed experience - all those tears though,
it was worth it
GOVERNOR JAY INSLEE IS EXPECTED TO SIGN THE BILL INTO
LAW IN THE COMING WEEKS -- MAKING WASHINGTON THE FOURTH
STATE IN THE COUNTRY TO APPROVE STATE FINANCIAL AID
FOR UNDOCUMENTED COLLEGE STUDENTS.
CALIFORNIA, TEXAS AND NEW MEXICO HAVE ALSO PASSED