A Dreamer about to graduate – now what?

I’m not a package that can be sent back

THIS IS THE MOMENT I’ve been waiting for. I’m finally in my senior year at Lesley University, majoring in business management and minoring in communications, and my future is ahead of me.

But unlike the rest of my classmates—who are applying for jobs and preparing for life after graduation—I am in limbo. That’s because I am a recipient of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), a temporary protective status for young people who arrived in the United States as children. DACA has given me the chance to live, learn, and contribute to the workforce in the only country I’ve really known.

I was five when I first came to the United States from the Dominican Republic, and seven when I moved to Lynn. I attended KIPP Lynn Academy Middle School and St. Mary’s High School, and then enrolled at Lesley University in Cambridge. I’m working two jobs to pay for college because I can’t receive federal aid, and I commute from Lynn to Cambridge each day—but my education is well worth it to me.

The reason that I can work and go to school now is because of DACA. I applied for the program in 2014, when I was a senior at St. Mary’s. A college counselor from KIPP helped me navigate the DACA process and supported me as I applied to colleges. It was a stressful process, but I did get permission to work and enroll in college thanks to DACA, and I’ve been fortunate to spend almost four years at Lesley. I’ve learned, made friends, and engaged with a new community of people who are going to change the world.

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Dominic Jette and the Panthers are 6-0 this season. (Item Photo by Katie Morrison)

LYNN — In an impressive showing for the KIPP Academy boys basketball team, the Panthers treated their home fans to a 52-25 win over the visiting Excel Wolves on Tuesday night.

The Panthers stormed out to an early lead and never looked back, closing their victory by out-scoring the Wolves 26-17 in the second half. With the win, the Panthers remain undefeated on the season at 6-0.

Leading the way for the Panthers was first-year starter Abdoul Barry, who scored 11 points and grabbed five rebounds. Barry provided a strong presence in the paint, one that was tough for Excel to defend.

KIPP’s Dominic Jette added nine points with four rebounds, Wallace Reed tallied eight points and Tona Puati finished with seven points in the winning effort. All three of them starred on KIPP’s football team this past fall season.

“Dominic’s a four-year player and he works hard,” KIPP first-year coach David White said. “He’s a leader for us. Abdoul’s a first-year starter but he has good length and good instincts. It just comes down to working on the fundamentals with these guys. They’re two of our leading scorers and I expect that continue.”

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KIPP’s Nayeli Germosen scored 16 points in Tuesday’s win. (Item Photo by Katie Morrison)
LYNN — The KIPP Academy girls basketball team found a winning formula Tuesday evening when the Panthers hosted Excel. KIPP scored early and often, built a comfortable lead and played stout defense the rest of the way. The end result was 45-15 win for the Panthers, KIPP’s third victory of the season.

KIPP captains Nayeli Germosen and Destiny Coley-Payas each scored 16 points to lead the Panthers in the right direction.

“Nayeli and Destiny are two of our captains,” KIPP assistant coach Priscilla Chancy, who filled in for head coach Andrea DeAngelo for Tuesday’s game, said. “They’re really strong leaders on the court. They’ll tell the girls what they’re doing wrong and also how to fix it. They provide strong direction on the court and they’re highly skilled players. They’re both great guards.”

Naudia Resnek added seven points and Kayla Keel finished with five points in the winning effort.

The Panthers took advantage of their opportunities in the first half and set the tone from the early going. KIPP worked its way to a 25-14 lead at the end of the first half, the start the Panthers were hoping for.

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Lynn, Ma. 1-8-18. Andy DeLeon, left, Timi Oladunjoye, Lyssindra Saintvil, and Amber Amadis talk about the therapeutic toy for patients with Cerebral Palsy as part of Project Lead the Way that gives students the chance to implement engineering design to create therapeutic toys.
Andy DeLeon, left, Timi Oladunjoye, Lyssindra Saintvil, and Amber Amadis talk about the therapeutic toy for patients with Cerebral Palsy as part of Project Lead the Way that gives students the chance to implement engineering design to create therapeutic toys. (Owen O’Rourke)

LYNN — Eighth graders at KIPP Academy spent the past month embracing the world of engineering design and STEM research so they could lend helping hands.

Project Lead the Way brings hands-on STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) experiences into classrooms. As part of this new curriculum, students at the local charter school used 3D printers to design therapeutic toys for children with cerebral palsy.

“It’s an organization that really pushes students at all levels to be creative, hands on, and to show what they know,” said Amal Mohamed, the KIPP Academy teacher in charge of the new curriculum. “Our students were introduced to a middle schooler with cerebral palsy and from there they were given a challenge where they were to help the patient function with their daily tasks.”

Cerebral palsy is a neurological disorder caused by a non-progressive brain injury or malformation that occurs while the child’s brain is under development, — before birth, during birth, or immediately after birth. The disorder affects body movement and muscle coordination.

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