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Chad Baldwin
Room 137, Bureau of Mines Building
Laramie, WY
Phone: (307) 766-2929
Email: cbaldwin@uwyo.edu

Immigration Topic of Fall Symposium at UW


April 23, 2014 — Complex social, economic and political issues resulting from U.S. immigration law will be the focus of a symposium Sept. 17-18 at the University of Wyoming.

The UW American Heritage Center’s Alan K. Simpson Institute sponsors the symposium, “Where Are We Now? Immigration Policy and Its Impact from a Wyoming and a National Perspective,” that will take place at the UW American Heritage Center and the UW Conference Center/Hilton Garden Inn.

“The Simpson Institute’s mission is to facilitate study of the roles and impacts of various individuals and groups that have put their stamp on our region and the nation,” says archivist Leslie Waggener. “Immigrants have certainly shaped, and continue to influence, policy and culture on a local, state and national level. Immigration touches on crucial issues of our changing workforce, the role we want to play in the world, and our cultural identity.”

The symposium events will, among other things, explore the themes of nationhood, citizenship and belonging; values and social otherness; borders; questions of social justice; individual, national and cultural identities; the ways in which people reinvent themselves, their cultures and their worlds in new contexts; and the role language plays in controversial conversations such as assimilation and education.

The AHC and the UW student organization Movimiento Estuduantil Chicano de Aztlan (MEChA) will host an event Wednesday, Sept. 17, that examines immigration through different angles: culture, art, music, activism and personal testimony.

A day of presentations and discussions will take place Thursday, Sept. 18, at the UW Conference Center at the Hilton Garden Inn. Events will begin with an introductory reflection on past and present immigration issues between retired U.S. Sen. Alan K. Simpson and media commentator Ruben Navarrette Jr.

UW Chicano Studies Assistant Professor Lilia Soto will moderate a panel in which immigration and migration issues will be discussed from a Wyoming perspective, with topics ranging from a historical overview to current migrant worker issues to refugee resettlement to life as a young Chicano in Wyoming.

 A lunch keynote talk by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and undocumented immigrant Jose Antonio Vargas follows the panel discussion. The day will end with discussion by national experts about where the nation is now with immigration issues, such as citizenship, border control, mixed-status families and more.

Specific times will be announced as the event gets closer. For updates on the symposium, and the latest news articles on immigration reform, see the symposium website at www.uwyo.edu/ahc/about/departments/simpson/immigration/index.html. For information about the symposium, email Waggener at lwaggen2@uwyo.edu or call (307) 766-2557.

Photo:
Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Antonio Vargas, an undocumented immigrant, will be among speakers at the UW symposium “Where Are We Now? Immigration Policy and Its Impact from a Wyoming and a National Perspective,” Sept. 17-18.

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