Andrea Solis Canto, a second year student at Xavier University, is active in addressing long-term solutions for challenges facing immigrants and refugees. She has worked closely with advocacy groups to build awareness of and eliminate stereotypes associated with migration and refugee resettlement. Her leadership experiences include developing educational programs for faculty, staff, and students, collaborating with nearby schools with significant refugee populations to develop cultural awareness, and assisting the Mexican Consulate in Arizona with identifying detained or missing immigrants. Currently she is a board member with Youth Educating Society (Y.E.S) where she partners with her classmates to increase awareness of immigration issues and through education, inspire high school and college students to advocate for protections on behalf of DACA recipients.
My passion for social justice orginates from my experience as a Mexican immigrant in the United States. Growing up, my sense of identity has been challenged and informed as a Latina woman in America. My privilege of dual citizenship and ability to communicate across cultures has compelled me to be a voice for those who are voiceless and pay forward the opportunities that I have been given as a University student. In my community I work in solidarity with young students who, like me, arrive from a different culture and must make the challenging transition into the U.S. public school system. On campus, I partner with my colleagues to educate and build awareness among college and high school students about immigration advocacy. My experiences are equally informed by my weekly service and fellowship with diverse communities that adjoin our campus as well as my summer educating Mexican nationals of their rights at Border Patrol Detention Centers, and assisting with identification of detained or missing immigrants. My experiences show me that the fight for justice will be an ongoing process that requires every voice to be recognized, engaged, and empowered. I am committed to being an ally for and with others.