Karina M.
Dreamer Stories • California

Karina M.

Karina works in biotech. DACA ending means she'd lose her job.

I’m hitting all these goals I had for myself. I’m doing so well at work.

Karina-stance

I started running. I think it’s something where you have a goal and you’re trying to get to that goal. It’s like, okay, I want my 3 miles in 30 minutes. It’s not there yet, but it’s something that if you work at it day by day you will get there.

And I’m hitting all these goals I had for myself. I’m doing so well at work. I also just passed the certification exam for project management. I’m giving myself the opportunity now to visualize 5, 10 years in advance in the States.

I think that’s something that actually DACA gave me the opportunity to do. Before I couldn’t dream that far in advance. With DACA I was like, yeah, okay, I see, I can work, you know?

 

 

I like to plan ahead. I’m the kind of person who likes to know what’s going to happen every minute of each day. With everything that’s happening now, and knowing that okay, within a month, I could actually not be at work anymore and I could actually not be able to work at any other company and continue to develop myself. It’s definitely a lot of uncertainty.

We’re 5 years into DACA now. There’s nearly 800,000 of us. We are very hardworking individuals who want to give so much back to the community and we’re kind of just beginning to plant our seeds. You just have to give a us a few more years to let everything bloom.

For me specifically, working in a biotech company, that means I would be able to invest all that I can in the work that I do. And that will ultimately result in medicines that will help millions of Americans and have a large impact on our society.

Karina-goofy

This was my first trip to Disneyland, and I was beyond excited to see what it was all about. That evening our whole family gathered to watch the fireworks display with a special performance from Mickey Mouse, and it really felt like the most magical place on earth.

 

If I lost my DACA status, I think the most difficult conversation would be with my younger brothers, just knowing there’s certain things I won’t be able to do for them anymore.

Everything I do, I do it for my little brothers. I want to make sure that they have THE best life possible. I grew up, we weren’t rich, my parents didn’t have a lot of time with us. So I want to make sure that my brothers do have that.

Me being able to provide that for them—that’s my accomplishment, that’s how I know I’ve been able to make it in this world.

They say, “Kari, I want to play basketball.” Guess what, I’ll sign them up for basketball and I’ll pay the fees if I have to. “Kari, I want to do swimming, Kari, I want to try acting”—they want to try everything! Me being able to provide that for them—that’s my accomplishment, that’s how I know I’ve been able to make it in this world.

Knowing that I can’t do that for them…it’d be a difficult reality to stomach.

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