The CLINIC Fellows program may have ended, but the journeys it sparked are just beginning. Here is a peek at the incredible success our Fellows have had over the last two years!
From new partnerships with law enforcement to increased parish engagement, CLINIC Fellow Matthew Young and the Migrant Support Center have a unique strategy for assisting immigrants in Jackson, Mississippi.
This month’s featured fellow is Sylvia Arias with Catholic Charities in Biloxi. The Peru native told CLINIC about how she came to work with immigrants and what she finds more rewarding about her job.
Susana Caterina Quiroga was born in Puno, Peru on May 25, 1978, not 1943 as her American lawyer indicated on her immigration forms. An attorney herself, Quiroga was wary of her lawyer’s suggestion to sign the forms without looking them over. Trusting her instinct, she insisted despite not fully understanding them; which turned out to be a good idea because she caught the mistake the attorney later blamed on his paralegal. This experience still stands out to her as one of the main reasons she decided to work in immigration.
Monica Callahan began working with Catholic Immigration Services of Little Rock as a CLINIC Fellow less than a year ago. She did not have much exposure to the complex issues of immigration law, but was inspired by her background with the Spanish language.
When talking to Lauren Armbrester, our CLINIC Fellow with Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Raleigh, it’s obvious she is passionate about working with immigrants in her community. As a newly accredited BIA representative, she doesn’t view this as just a job, but as a way to live her spirituality.
Estela Tirado, a CLINIC Fellow working with the Hispanic Interest Coalition of Alabama (HICA), moved to the United States this past September and is excited to have a job she is personally connected to.
Nathalie Dietrich knows immigration from multiple angles. Although she “never could have imagined that she would be living in the United States” one day, that journey has brought her to advocate for immigrants, first as a volunteer, then as a legal assistant and now as a BIA-accredited representative.
An immigrant herself, Miriam Martinez understands the challenges her clients face. She was separated from her parents when she was young, had a painful journey to the U.S. as a child and has lived as an undocumented immigrant in the United States.