As a follow up to that post, consider the essay yesterday in the Minnesota Daily by Hemang Sharma, an immigrant from India. After five years in the U.S. he and his family have begun the process to adjust their immigration status from permanent legal residency to citizenship.
Sharma came to the U.S. at age 17, as a high school senior. He already knew basic English and was comfortable with our democratic culture. Yet it was attending the University of Minnesota, he said, that enabled him to transition into American society much more fully than would have been possible otherwise.
For one thing, he learned to manage his time while in college. He got scholarships and worked full-time, often for minimum wage. And he was able to graduate in four years.
To be sure, Sharma had advantages many immigrants do not. He already had a solid background in the English language. He and his family were not struggling with poverty or undocumented status.
And yet it was the university experience, he believes, that enabled him to fully transition into American culture. In his piece for the Daily, he encourages other immigrants to embrace the experiences that immigration offers to connect with people unlike yourself. Few places offer the opportunities to do that the way colleges and universities do.
Source: “Coming to America,” Minnesota Daily, Hemang Sharma, 12-4-12
Our firm handles situations similar to those discussed in this post. To learn more our practice, please visit our Minnesota family immigration page.