From a Homeless Shelter to the Ivy League

August 4th, 2015
495171201_640.jpgAs we debate immigration,  we still always look favorably on the “Dreamers.”  The young undocumented students thriving here in America.  It’s easy to romanticize that experience and even draw conclusion from the success of individuals.

The greater challenge is to look at those successes and see what real world lessons we might draw that can tell us more about success and failure and social mobility here in the U.S.

Dan-el Padilla Peralta is perhaps the penultimate success story.  Raised in New York's shelters, he would ultimately graduate from Princeton, Oxford and Stanford and is currently a Mellon Research Fellow at Columbia.

His memoir is Undocumented: A Dominican Boys Odyssey from a Homeless Shelter to the Ivy League.

My conversation with Dan-el Padilla Peralta: