Help Me Get to Columbia University
My name is Kori Zacher. I have been accepted into a summer program at Columbia University, where I will take a course on Global Migration and Personal Identity. This course is very important to me as my parents and their families are themselves immigrants. I want to make a difference in the world and help immigrant people who have nowhere to go (Please read below the essay I submitted to Columbia that talks about why I want to take this course).
The money I am raising will cover my tuition ($2,500), housing ($2,000), and airplane ($500). Every dollar counts and I assure you that I will do my best to succeed and make a difference in the world.
Who would have thought that a 12-year-old girl coming from a family
of athletes would care so much about politics? Following the news I learned that immigrant children are being separated from their parents. At 12 years old, being separated from my parents had never crossed my mind. I was shocked to hear this was happening. Recently, my parents and I were sitting in the comfort of our house watching a television show and this issue was brought up again. It broke my heart, thinking about people coming to the United States to give themselves and their families better lives, watching their children torn apart from them and thrown into detention centers. This is one of the many reasons why I am interested in studying International Relations. I want to change things.
My name is Kori Zacher. I am 13 years old. I like to read, travel, cook, draw, write and go to school. For the past five years I have swum for Scottsdale Synchro practicing 18 hours per week. I was born and raised in Scottsdale, Arizona, a town influenced by Latin-American cultures, due to the proximity to Mexico. An example of this influence is a routine we performed at Synchronized Swimming Nationals was choreographed to “Mi Gente” by J Balvin, Willy Williams and Beyonce.
Reading is a passion of mine. While researching a charity I started, “Books for Kids,” I learned that 250 million children can not read. Knowing that there are millions of kids out there that can’t experience the joys of reading saddens me. “Books for Kids” takes donated books and sends them to poor children around the world.
I have had the opportunity to visit over 40 countries, many of them are suffering from poverty and/or a lack of good leadership. This has increased my awareness of current global issues.
I wanted to share my experiences with others so I started a blog, “Blanquita Around the World” ( www.blanquitaaroundtheworld.wordpress.com ), recounting my travels for children who want to take their parents on vacation.
I come from a family of immigrants. My mother is from Mexico; her grandfather immigrated to Mexico from France. My father is from Oregon; his mother is from Spain. My paternal grandfather’s family is from Germany and Russia; they immigrated to North Dakota and then moved to Oregon. My family is very diverse, and I have grown up speaking three different languages: French, English, and Spanish. I must give credit to my mother for teaching me these languages and for enrolling me in a French school. I am able to see the world in a global way.
In the current political climate, people are starting to hate immigration. We must remember that the United States was built on immigration. If Europeans had not come to America, America wouldn’t be the country it is today, a nation shaped by different cultures, which sets us apart from the rest of the world.
I am lucky to have parents who encourage me to work hard for what I want. When I told my parents that I needed a computer for school, they told me that I had to save enough money to buy one myself. It took a year of babysitting to buy the computer I am writing this essay on.
The fact that I come from an immigrant family and seeing what is happening to immigrants has fueled my passion for studying International Relations. That is why I want to take the Personal Identity and Global Migration class through the Columbia University Summer Program for Highschoolers.