How it all started
It was not that long ago that I thought my dream of becoming a doctor would always be just a dream. I can vividly recall the first few months of medical school - late evenings of studying that would turn into long nights of worrying about financing my next semester. I was ineligible for federal loans due to my immigration status and everything I had worked so hard for could so easily end.
All the while, the messages started to arrive. Students who wanted to pursue medical careers wanted to know how to finance their own medical education. Their stories impressed me. These were students that had sacrificed much of their time and energy for the benefit of others. Students who had raised themselves after their families were separated by our immigration system. Students who had excelled in the face of adversity and who would never be rewarded for their merit by the same measures as their peers.
I could not watch these students live through the same frustrations I knew so well. With no means of helping these students, I turned to the same people that had made my success possible.
- Raquel (Co-Founder)
I met Raquel my sophomore year at Harvard. Through classes, clubs, and lots of late night burrito runs, I got to really know and admire her for her intelligence, poise, and ridiculous sense of humor. But it wasn't until my senior year that Raquel finally shared her biggest secret - that she was undocumented.
During a time when my friends and I were bursting with excitement as we embarked on the next chapter of our lives, I knew one of my closest friends couldn't share that with us. My heart broke at the thought that while we might be similar in so many ways - both immigrated to America at a young age, loved to learn, and eager to make our marks on the world - Raquel would not have the same opportunities that I had.
Even after she fearlessly applied herself and was accepted into one of the top medical schools in the country, she still wasn't sure if she could actually afford first semester's tuition. I couldn't let that happen, I called up some of our college friends who knew about Raquel's situation and together we were able to help her make that first payment for UCLA.
When Raquel told me that she started hearing about more and more kids like her - students who have worked so hard their entire lives but cannot complete their education because of a lack of funding due to their immigration status - I knew we had to build something that could help more than just 1 student.
- Enhao (Co-Founder)