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US This student just became the first Latino DACA recipient to win the Rhodes Scholarship

22:15  26 november  2020
22:15  26 november  2020 Source:   cnn.com

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Harvard University student becomes first DACA recipient to win Rhodes Scholarship . "There's no way something like this belongs to just one person," Jin Kyu Park The Rhodes Trust provides full financial assistance for scholars to pursue a degree at the University of Oxford for two or three years.

Jin Kyu Park, a 22-year-old student at Harvard University, recently made history after becoming the first -ever recipient of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals ( DACA ) program to win the Rhodes Scholarship . NBC News reported Wednesday that Park was awarded the prestigious scholarship

In second grade, Santiago Potes walked into Marina Esteva's gifted and talented classroom at Sweetwater Elementary School in Miami, Florida, for the first time.

a man holding a sign © Courtesy Santiago Potes

He was an undocumented immigrant from Colombia who entered the country when he was 4 years old. Esteva said she quickly noticed his intelligence and wanted to nurture him toward success.

Now, Potes is the first Latino DACA recipient to be awarded a prestigious Rhodes Scholarship.

On Saturday, the Rhodes Trust announced that Potes, a 2020 graduate of Columbia University in New York, would be one of the 2021 Rhodes Scholars.

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"Being the first DACA recipient to win the Rhodes , it's been truly -- it's been a humbling experience, and I feel an immense responsibility to give back to the immigrant community," Park told ABC-owned station WABC in a recent interview. "I'm going to spend the rest of my life really trying to live up to it."

News Harvard University student becomes first DACA recipient to win Rhodes Scholarship . Past Rhodes scholars and other Rhodes Trust supporters are volunteering their private counsel to Park in the meantime, but it's a "matter of American law and not anything the Rhodes Trust can resolve alone

Potes traces all his success back to Esteva, the teacher he saw twice a week from second to fifth grade in elementary school.

"She was one of the biggest blessings that I've had in my entire life so far," Potes told CNN's Poppy Harlow.

"My parents didn't go to college. My parents had me when they were 16 years old. So, she really became kind of like my first mother figure actually. She went out of her way to teach me a rigorous education."

That included a lesson about what it meant to be a Renaissance man, a term that young Potes took to heart. In addition to his academic success, Potes is also an accomplished violinist and is fluent -- or near fluent -- in nine languages, one of which is Chinese.

In their announcement, the Rhodes Trust wrote, "Santiago has been a teaching or research assistant for leading professors in physics, philosophy, social psychology and neuroscience, and won numerous college prizes for leadership as well as academic performance. He is widely published on legal issues relating to DACA status, was one of the DACA recipients featured in a brief filed with the Supreme Court to preserve DACA."

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According to the Rhodes Scholarships website, scholars are chosen “not only for their outstanding scholarly achievements, but for their character According to the Harvard Crimson, this is the second time Park applied for the Rhodes Scholarship , and the first year that DACA recipients (those part

The Rhodes scholarship supports students around the world in attending Oxford. In recent years the scholarship 's eligibility requirements have been expanded to include legal permanent residents and DACA recipients , which refers to an immigration program called Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals.

"He is so complete. He's a well-rounded human being," Esteva told CNN.

"With the highest moral caliber, with a sense of justice, with a sense of what is excellence, and willing to sacrifice for excellence, not for show, but for excellence itself."

Esteva is a Cuban refugee and immigrant to the United States herself. She said it means even more to have teacher and student both Latino immigrants and refugees, two generations of opportunity and success in the United States.

"I wish there were a larger national conversation about how important elementary school teachers specifically are," Potes said.

He said he would not have reached this level of success if Esteva had not told him from an early age that she believed he could do great things.

For her part, Esteva said she just spotted what was already innately in Potes as a child.

"I planted a seed in fertile soil. You took care of a plant. You are the one who made it possible."

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In an increasingly uncertain time for DACA recipients , Jin Kyu Park hopes his scholarship win shows other undocumented students that change is possible. Produced by: Marnette Federis. Image credit: Alex Newman/The World. Aired November 27, 2018.

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Potes will study contemporary East Asia and international politics at Oxford University with an eye toward working in national security in the United States. His program will begin in October 2021.

a person standing in front of a mirror posing for the camera: Santiago Potes is pictured with elementary school teacher Marina Esteva, who he describes as © Courtesy Santiago Potes Santiago Potes is pictured with elementary school teacher Marina Esteva, who he describes as "one of the biggest blessings that I've had in my life so far."

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