Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Eduardo Melendez

Hello Mr. Ramsey,

This email might come to you as a surprise since I never quite replied to the emails when I was asked for feedback. But as you may or may not know my journey has been quite different from the vast majority of students you have ever encountered with, the life of an undocumented student doesn't come with many positive aspects if any whatsoever so every time I was asked to give feedback of how I was currently doing as a college student, I could have simply replied and said, "Bad." But now I am finished with my freshman year in college and I can finally put together some advice and suggestions for students in the same situation as well as the ILC program.

I will first start of by sharing some of my experiences at SCU's school of engineering. It was certainly a bless to be part of such an institution, I just have to say that regardless of the academic difficulties I faced coming out of RHS, being an engineering student for a single year enlightened my life and allowed me to experience priceless memories that made me grow as an individual. Academically there were some bumps along the road but ultimately it was a smooth and unforgettable ride. I really want to thank the ILC for informing me about SCU, and I can already see the SCU is becoming to be one of the favorite colleges to apply for RHS students. I feel truly proud that Jocelyn and I were able to open up the doors for RHS.

Financially it was a complete different story, and it is really unfortunate that neither the ILC nor anyone else was able to help me allocate the resources necessary to afford college. The only reason why I was able to afford college for a year is because I was able to obtain several small private scholarships that I found by myself, also my parents agreed to make an immense sacrifice and sell their house in Mexico so I could complete the payments for the first year. Now all the money is gone and I am forced to withdraw from SCU solely due to financial struggles. When I first joined the ILC and had we had the parents meeting. My parents as well as all of the parents were assured that financial need would be the last of our worries and should not be an excuse to not attend college. Now I am sorry to break the news but financial need turned out to be my only struggle that grew so big and now I am forced to leave school. I understand that the ILC is not knowledgeable about undocumented students and that was the reason why you weren't prepared enough to provide me with the necessary counseling. This is the reason why I urge the ILC to spend a little more time learning about the different ways there are to help students like me so we can ultimately avoid having anyone go through these unfortunate struggles ever again.

Now I am looking for a community college nearby Santa Clara so I can stay in contact with SCU and ultimately be able to return to SCU by the following year by means of obtaining a scholarship given by the Jesuits at the school. It that does not work out then it it likely that I will never return at SCU and will probably look for a more affordable college to attend. At this point in my life I have more questions than answers but I am trying everything in my hands to come up with a plan. I would just really love for this email to be sent out to the entire ILC committee in order to spread awareness and get a plan in progress. The Ivy League Connection in an amazing source of help to students around the area, but at the same time it does provide appropriate guidance to a vast number of talented undocumented students to reach the dreams like any other regular student striving to become college student.

The intent of this email is not to criticize the lack of assistance I got from the ILC, but to bring awareness to the committee, improve the program and strengthen its weaknesses to become able to provide guidance to every student regardless of their background. I please urge you to spread the word... that is the only way to improve.

Thank you for listening.

Eduardo Melendez


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Thank you for your thoughtful comments.

    I want you to know that we are always trying to find the most current information to give you the best opportunity to succeed. For undocumented students, the most comprehensive information I have found is contained in a 52 page report generated by the USC Center for Higher Education Policy Analysis in a 2006 titled: College and Financial Aid for AB540 Undocumented Immigrant Students. Here's the direct link:


    I have also linked to this report and other financial aid on our ILC Getting Into College Website. Here's that link:


    Best of luck to you.