Beyond 2 Suitcases [Inside Higher Ed]

November 9, 2020

“What did you pack in the suitcases?” asked the curious 9-year-old. “Why could you not bring more than two suitcases?” asked another. Those were rapid-fire questions thrown my way as I was giving a classroom presentation to 8- and 9-year-old students in an elementary school about immigrants and what the path looks like to citizenship.

Most of us first-generation immigrants, including international trainees who come here for a Ph.D. degree or for postdoctoral training, uproot our whole lives in search of the American dream. At the same time, we constantly navigate a gamut of challenges -- both foreseen and unforeseen -- in our immigrant lives.


In this article, I will highlight a relatively common set of professional challenges that we immigrants continue to face. This is far from a complete list, and in many cases, each challenge leads to difficult experiences. Those experiences are compounded by uncertainties around rapidly changing immigration policies.

Read more here.