Students from the College of St. Benedict/St. Johns University participated in our Border Awareness Experience (BAE) Program.

 

The group met with organizations,   grassroots leaders, locals, and others who deal with immigration issues on the U.S./Mexican border.  They attended an immigration court hearing and presentation at the United States District Court in Las Cruces, NM given by the Honorable Judge  Carmen Garza. A visit that one student found to be “truly awesome to have a front seat view of government in action.” The highlight of their visit was the tour given by the Border Patrol.  

 

One participant in her evaluation wrote, “I loved the Border Patrol tour that was a really unique experience I couldn't have gotten at home.” 

 

Another participant stated that the tour really changed her mind about Border Patrol. She said, “It was a good reminder that they don't make the law, they just enforce it. That was especially relevant to me as a public policy major.”

 

The group was given the opportunity to understand what living in and near a border city entails. They were hosted by local families from the Anthony community who presented insight on border issues and particularly placed a human face on  immigration issues.

 

“This trip definitely opened my eyes!” commented another of the participants.

 

Down time included visits to museums and opportunities to explore the sites of the border cities of El Paso, TX; Anthony, TX; Anthony, NM, Las Cruces, NM and Old Mesilla, NM.  The participants had an incredible time and really enjoyed the food. 

 

Many of our participants treated the group to some delicious traditional meals such as tamales and             champurrado provided by Rosie, fresh flour gorditas and a special dessert provided by Fabiola; and Omar Burciaga from the Red Rooster Café provided one of his delicious desserts. 

 

The tour was guided by our Volunteer Technology Director and BAE Coordinator, Saif Almuhairbi and WInC Volunteer Eric Licerio.  For more information on the BAE, please contact Saif at 575-882-556.