Allen Tu is an American-born child of Vietnamese refugees. His parents came to the US via the Refugee Act of 1980, and settled in Chicago with the help of an old family friend. He is currently in his third year at University of Illinois at Chicago, and wishes to get involved in fighting for immigrants’ rights as it relates to criminal law. He has been a long-time volunteer and a youth leader
of the Korean American Resource & Cultural Center’s youth council, FYSH (Fighting Youth Shouting Out for Humanity). He is also a spoken word artist and often performs pieces related to social justice and youth empowerment.
- City & State: Chicago, IL
- Why I’m riding: I want to create change, educate, network and learn from this experience.
- While I’m riding, I hope people can support by: I hope people can support by donating and riding with us by keeping track of and sharing our trip.
- I’m most looking forward to visiting: I’m looking forward to visiting New Orleans because of the amazing mobilization of the Vietnamese community post-Katrina.
- My secret superpower: I can brainwash people with whatever I want them to think. In other words, whenever I perform on stage, I can effectively convey my message to the audience and hopefully grab people for my side.
- Favorite quote: “We are the leaders we’ve been waiting for.” —- Grace Lee Boggs
Brandon Licuanan is an 18-year old Filipino American and an active member of Korean American Resource & Cultural Center’s youth council, FYSH (Fighting Youth Shouting Out for Humanity). Brandon’s grandparents came to the US for an opportunity of a better life in 1971. They settled in Chicago and worked as shoppers’ assistance for $2.90 an hour. Brandon grew up hearing stories of his grandparents eating 20 cents rotisserie chicken that would feed them for two whole days. After years of hard work, both his grandparents became nurse’s aids, a job they kept for 19 years. They earned and saved enough to eventually petition their children who they left behind in the Philippines. Brandon’s mother was the last of the children to arrive in the US, and the whole family was reunited after many years. Brandon carries the stories of his parents, grandparents, uncles and aunts as he rides across the country for immigration reform.
- City, State: Chicago, IL
- Why I’m riding: To represent my youth council, FYSH, and fight for the DREAM Act and CIR. As a U.S. citizen, I realize how privileged and fortunate I am. I want to help fight for reform that would grant all immigrants the same opportunities I was blessed with.
- While I’m riding, I hope people can support by: Sharing our cause and telling our stories. Please let it be known that there are youth out there who are not afraid to use their voice and make differences in their communities.
- I’m most looking forward to visiting: Washington D.C., the nation’s capital.
- My secret superpower: Sonicboom! (I’m very comfortable with speaking)
- Favorite quote: “A scattered dream that’s like a far-off memory. A far-off memory that’s like a scattered dream. I want to line the pieces up – yours and mine.” -Kingdom Hearts II intro.
Ga Young Chung
Ga Young Chung is an international student from South Korea pursuing her doctorate degree in Education Policies at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Through her studies, Ga Young came to understand the plight and struggles of undocumented immigrants. She has been involved in campaigns for justice including the Education Justice Project, which provides higher education for incarcerated peoples. She hopes to bring her experiences back to Korea and advocate for continue to advocate human rights on a global scale. She is currently working as a summer fellow at the Korean Resource Center.
- City, State: Los Angeles, CA
- Why I’m riding: I am a supporter and friend. I defend incarcerated people’s rights and immigrants’ rights because I believe in human rights. Throughout the road trip, I will try to keep the morale of team up. It will be exciting, but also hard and people will get tired and possibly discouraged at times. But, with my bubbly personality, optimism and smile, I will remind everyone why we started this van tour.
- My secret superpower: Meeting with us and having an honest and meaningful discussion about immigration reform.
- I’m most looking forward to visiting: I can’t wait to go to Atlanta, GA, because I know the Dream Riders will be able to leave a great impact on the immigrant, especially the Korean-American, population there.
- Favorite quote: “Yesterday is history, tomorrow is mystery, but today is a gift” -Bill Keane
HyunKyu (Kevin) Lee
HyunKyu (Kevin) Lee graduated from the University of California at Los Angeles and has a B.A. in History and a minor in Asian Humanities. His parents emigrated from South Korea to California in 1999 when he was 9 years old and since then he has watched his family struggle to provide a good life for him, particularly in the absence of just and humane immigration reform. Understanding the struggles of recent immigrants, he recently took his LSATs with the hopes obtaining a law degree in order to serve and advocate on the community’s behalf. Kevin is a DACA recipient and currently a Community Organizer with the Korean Resource Center. Both his parents are undocumented. In May he met with President Obama and Vice President Biden in May with other DACA recipients and families of undocumented immigrants to share his story and urge their support for reform.
- City, State: Los Angeles, CA
- Why I’m riding: I am a Dream Rider because I want to meet other youth who will be the future of America while raising awareness of immigration reform.
- While I’m riding, I hope people can support by: Being active on social media. Tweet about our van tour to raise awareness about our presence in the various states and let the people in your own organizations and communities know about immigration reform and its importance.
- I’m most looking forward to visiting: Louisiana. For the seafood!
SaeHee Chun is a rising sophomore at the George Washington University majoring in Asian Studies. She is also currently an intern with the National Korean American Service & Education Consortium. She is a child of immigrants and grew up in Fairfax, VA, all her life. She hopes to expose herself more to the challenges of the marginalized low-income, limited English proficient Korean American community and has sought out opportunities to advocate on their behalf. She wants to encourage young Korean American youth to care about community issues and civic participation as a way to create change.
- City, State: Annandale, VA
- Why I’m riding: I hope to get to know people my age from all different backgrounds who are affected by the broken immigration system and gain an understanding of the various perspectives from different parts of the country.
- While I’m riding, I hope people can support by: Coming out to our events to hear the stories of the DREAMers. It would be great if we can reach people in the states and districts we are not able to visit through social media, too.
I’m most looking forward to visiting: Houston! Texas gives off a homey vibe to me because I visited family there three years ago, and it was one of my most memorable, favorite trips. I’m excited to get to go back, this time to meet DREAMers and advocates around my age.
- My secret superpower: Stamina! I’m (sorta) quiet but full of energy!
- Favorite quote: “If you don’t have any shadows, you’re not in the light.” ~Lady Gaga
Sung Il (Simon) Jun is a recent graduate of the New Roads School and will attend the University of California, Irvine as an incoming Freshman in the fall. His parents emigrated to the US from South Korea in 2001 on a visitor’s visa. His parents applied for family petition in 2004 but with the backlogs they are still waiting to be approved. In the process, the Jun family fell out of status. Sung Il found out he was undocumented in 8th grade, but with the support of his middle school teacher, he was able to continue his post-secondary education at a private school. Now with the newly passed law in California, the CA DREAM Act, Sung Il is able to start his first year at UC Irvine. He wants to major in Business. He currently is a volunteer at the Korean Resource Center.
- City, State: Los Angeles, CA
- Why I’m riding: Being a part of the Dream Riders is an opportunity for me to share my life and advocate for immigration reform so that people like me and my parents don’t have to live in the shadows and live day to day in struggle.
- While I’m riding, I hope people can support by: Sharing what you know and be willing to learn about immigration so that we can build a unified community and urge our elected officials to support comprehensive immigration reform.
- My secret superpower: I have the awesome ability to never stop talking, especially about immigration reform.
- Favorite quote: “Shoot for a star and hit a stump than shoot for a stump and miss.” -Marcus Luttrell
Yea So (Anna) Jung just graduated from Golden Valley High School and will be an incoming Freshman at the University of California, Berkeley in the fall (2013). Anna is a DACA recipient and received a driver license recently. Anna immigrated to the U.S. in 2004 with her parents and brother. Anna’s parents decided to come to the U.S. to provide a better education and opportunities for Anna and her brother.
“It hurts me that my parents, the people who gave up their happy lives and their friends and family, are feeling guilty and apologetic that they were unable to do more for us. Though they sacrificed so many precious things they had, they are still sorry that we as students are so limited with our opportunities. And what I want to point out is, I know that my parents are not the only ones who feel this way. There are hundreds, thousands, and possibly millions of parents who work very hard just for their children and their education. Because so many immigrant families like mine simply live on to work hard and contribute to the society, because keeping families together and access to education is a human right, we need a fair and a comprehensive immigration reform. We need a clear and inclusive pathway to citizenship so that we could fully give back to this great country.”
Anna currently volunteers with the Korean Resource Center in Los Angeles.
- City, State: Los Angeles, CA
- Why I’m riding: I ride for experience. I’m new to this; being out there and advocating for reform by sharing my story. But, I want to be a part of this – part of creating change. I ride to be more involved with the people who are like me.
- While I’m riding, I hope people can support by: being open minded.
- I’m most looking forward to visiting: Washington D.C.
- My secret superpower: I always try to consider others’ point of views and their individual stories. I might not understand, but I try to learn their perspectives and find common ground.
- Favorite quote: “When nothing seems to help, I go look at a stonecutter hammering away at his rock perhaps a hundred times without as much as a crack showing in it. Yet at the hundred and first blow it will split in two, and I know it was not that blow that did it, but all that had gone before.” – Jacob Riis
Updated on 2015-07-23T13:46:17-07:00, by .