For decades, no topic has been more divisive and hotly debated than the issue of immigration. Becoming a permanent resident of the United States by law is often a complicated and exhausting process. But even when immigrants are granted visas and titles of permanent residents, they are often looked down upon and accused of stealing jobs of the real Americans – often defined as white Americans – who have lived in the United States their entire lives. Many non-immigrant Americans continue to deny immigrants as true members of the community, excluding them even after decades of citizenship.
The United States is a melting pot of cultures, races and ideas. Diversity is a core element of America and creates a medley of beliefs, ideas and backgrounds. Immigration is at the cornerstone of such cultural and ideological diversity. Exceptional people from all over the world come to share their ideas and innovations in the United States, making the nation as powerful and unique as it is today. Because diversity is such a core part of our nation, it surprises me that immigration is so prevalently looked down upon and disliked.
Like the United States, Andover is also based on the principle of diversity, as exemplified by our motto “Youth from Every Quarter.” Our community intentionally creates a productive atmosphere in which students from all over the world can interact and learn. But unlike at Andover, where celebration and mutual understanding across cultures is encouraged, in America, immigrants are never truly integrated and often discriminated against. And, in our community, it is clear that such diversity and acceptance of all cultures create an extremely unique and productive community.
By attending Andover, we can better appreciate diversity and immigration in America. Here at Andover, we have intentional diversity that creates an atmosphere of learning and progress. At my old school, most students were racially homogenous. Few had ever left the country or experienced diverse culture within the United States, so everyone had similar ideas and thoughts. When I first arrived here, I was overwhelmed by the international community that exposed me to so many more viewpoints. “Youth from Every Quarter” is a branch of the idea of immigration, one that exemplifies our community goal for this school. Andover students, as well as the rest of the nation, should realize that diversity of culture and country creates the dynamic community that we live in and can make members of our own immediate community and nation global leaders.