Immigration Simulation at The University of Scranton

The University of Scranton hosted the second inter-organizational Immigration Simulation on Thursday, March 5. 

This event allowed individuals to put themselves into the place of a migrant trying to enter the United States. 

At the event, people went through a mix of experiences that helped participants understand how the process works and the challenges of it. 

Some of the issues the simulation highlighted were Push Factors from other countries, the visa process, border patrol, immigration policy, barriers to healthcare in the U.S. and Catholic Social teaching on migration. 

Immigration Simulation pamphlet.

For the simulation, participants received a pamphlet that assigned a role to them (migrant’s name and situation when trying to enter the U.S.) as well as had space to keep track of expenses and documents. 

A money assignment and other things to think about during the process were also listed in the pamphlet. 

Bridget McGuire ‘20, the secretary of the Social Justice Club and an ISP Peer Facilitator, got involved with this simulation and helped lead it to success. 

McGuire and Briana Abrams ‘20, who both went to the Kino Border Initiative Pilgrimage in past years, both worked at the event and spoke with us about their hope for the event. 

A sign at the event

“Our hope is that people who go through the Simulation will be able to put themselves in the shoes of someone migrating to the U.S. and to learn more about how complicated and difficult the immigration system is. It’s a small-scale representation of real-life experiences, but we worked to make it as realistic as possible in that capacity. We also were able to include videos throughout the simulation of the personal experiences of people in our local community who immigrated, which they were generous to provide,” McGuire said.

The event was a group effort between many organizations.

Bridget McGuire and Briana Abrams at the Immigration Simulation.

“It is a collaborative event between the Center for Service and Social Justice, the Cross Cultural Centers, the Ellacuría Initiative, The Jesuit Center, Student Government, USPB Mission and Identity, the Social Justice Club, and we used materials from the Kino Border Initiative’s immigration simulation layout,” McGuire said.

The Immigration Simulation helped many people learn more about the immigration process and the reality of what migrants have to go through, and it was great to see so many students and faculty at the event.

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