Deseret News
Letter to the editor

The story of the young refugee that is going to medical school is amazing from the May 2 article "Young woman goes from refugee camp to medical school in 5 years." That is not the only story of success within the refugee community.

Many years ago, I taught at Parkview Elementary School. One fall, a beautiful young woman who was withdrawn and somewhat befuddled with America joined my class. Her father had been a high ranking official in Somalia, and one night they watched a difficult event where their father was injured and hurt. He had made plans in case of an emergency to get his family out of Somalia. They walked along the Red Sea, and overtime, made the trip to being settled in Salt Lake City.

This was 12 years ago before we were awash in refugees. This young woman came into the class silent, but worked hard over time to learn and push forward. She succeeded enough to graduate with honors from the University of Utah and be accepted to medical school at the University of Utah. She and her family were remarkable.

Comment on this story

Utah has a unique privilege of inviting families here to help them realize that there is a path to success here. I have had the privilege to know many refugee students as a teacher at both Parkview and Escalante on the west side of Salt Lake City. Immigrant children have also been in the mix.

There are stories of success that we need to know. Pioneers came into the valley because of disruption and practicing outside the circle of public opinion. Hopefully, we can look around us and look at the many that have achieved and built successful patterns for those in their families and other refugees to follow.

Julie Monson

Friedrichsdorf, Germany