Laila Alvarez's dedication and commitment towards her advocacy work on immigrant rights began in high school, where a large number of her community was undocumented. It was during that time that she developed a better understanding of the complexities of social inequality and the need to advocate for immigrant rights and policy reform. During her time as a student her, dedication towards advocacy work and her participation in working with grassroots organizations and Pitzer have made an immense impact for those communities. Her work with Encuentros; a Pitzer club designed to facilitate and forge conversation and relationships between local workers , community members and college students, her work on the Sanctuary Working Group Committee and as a First Generation Program Intern builds relationship and support between various communities. Pitzer College is grateful for Laila's contributions and continuing advocacy work towards immigrant rights and policy reform. We consider her an example to students seeking to create change.
I began my advocacy work surrounding immigrant rights at a local day labor center when I was in high school. For the past 7 years, I've had the opportunity to participate in grassroots organizing in my local community and apply the knowledge to my college education. Living in the neighboring city, where a large number of the population is undocumented, helped me gain a better understanding of the complexities of this social inequality. On campus, I lead one of the student service organizations focused on building community between local workers, community members, and college students. I plan discussions on intersecting social issues oppressing the undocumented community, organize lectures from Claremont College professors, and plan community events. The group is intended to build institutional and community based networks, foster community, and empower every member towards political action. I have dedicated my service to community efforts on and off campus fighting for policy changes on both the local and federal levels in support of the immigrant rights movement.