Category: Georgetown Magazine, Spring 2024

Title:40 years of supporting local immigrant communities

Author: Lauren M. Poteat
Date Published: April 8, 2024
a tutor laughs while working with elementary students
Caroline Vail (C’24) interned with the Summer Immigrant Rights and Advocacy Program through Georgetown’s Center for Social Justice. Vail and her fellow interns helped migrant families move through the U.S. immigration system. Photo: Georgetown University

For nearly 40 years, Georgetown’s DC Schools Project (DCSP) has provided youth and adults of immigrant backgrounds with English language tutoring, mentoring, and advocacy programs aimed at improving literacy skills and academic performance, and supporting acculturation.

DCSP began in 1984 in response to the Salvadoran civil war and a significant increase in Washington, DC’s immigrant population. Today, the program has over 150 student volunteers and Federal Work Study-funded tutors, led by 15 Georgetown student coordinators.

Each semester, DCSP volunteers serve approximately 200 newcomer migrant students and their families throughout the District, providing tutoring at schools, in students’ homes, on Georgetown’s campus, and at community-based organizations.

“The DC Schools Project is a manifestation of Georgetown’s value of being a ‘Hoya for Others.’ For nearly 40 years, the Georgetown DCSP community has formed deep relationships with migrant families, children, and workers,” says Jessica Lee (G’22), associate director for the immigrant justice initiatives at Georgetown’s Center for Social Justice Research, Teaching, and Service. DCSP tutors provide “high-impact English language tutoring and support for low-income newcomers, but beyond that, they are learning about themselves and discovering a shared love of social justice work.”

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