Beyond the headlines and policy papers about Mexican immigrants are the lives of men and women, boys and girls. Helping Carolina students better understand the human complexities of immigration is the mission of UNC’s Latino Migration Project.
The Project builds ties between Chapel Hill and the state of Guanajuato, Mexico, where many North Carolina immigrants have originated. It offers UNC students two programs — APPLES Global Course Guanajuato and Project Guanajuato — which provide a “transformative experience” involving service learning, global travel, internships and the development of close ties between UNC students, local immigrants and their families in Mexico, according to Hannah Gill, director of the Project.
Guile Contreras ’14 (photographed above), whose parents are from El Salvador, grew up in Siler City, N.C. He participated in Project Guanajuato the summer after his first year at Carolina and became a trip leader the following summer.
“Students who go through Project Guanajuato get a new image of Mexico,” says Contreras. “In the long term, they have a better understanding of immigrants and why people emigrate, beyond [just] talking about it in class.”
Read the entire article here: http://magazine.college.unc.edu/2013/09/guanajuato/