Over the past nine months, Zoé Gibert has served as an Intern at PCUN and at the CAPACES Leadership Institute (CLI). What makes Zoe’s experience compelling, however, is that she traveled all the way from France to serve at PCUN. While spending a year in beautiful Puebla, Mexico as an exchange student, Zoe met another student, Ana, from Willamette University in Salem, Oregon. After sharing with Ana that she wanted to work with an organization that helped folks in need of immigration services, Ana suggested PCUN as a possible option. But it wasn’t easy getting to PCUN. She had to overcome the hassles of dealing with two embassies, developing an internship that met her school’s criteria, and finally finding Woodburn, Oregon.
During her first two months at PCUN, Zoe worked tirelessly alongside muralist Juanishi Orosco and the many volunteers who helped paint the amazing mural on the CLI’s new building. By her third month, Zoe transitioned to working at PCUN’s Service Center greeting members, filing papers, answering questions, and working on various projects throughout the office. After learning the ins and outs of working at the Service Center, Zoe transitioned to working on a larger project. She started working with members who were applying for a Waiver on the Grounds of Inadmissibility, a waiver for individuals who would otherwise be inadmissible to the U.S. By the end of her internship, Zoe was working on an impressive nine applications.
Sadly, Zoe’s stay in Oregon came to an end this past week. She returned home and now has the daunting task of completing a 100-200 page thesis describing her experience at PCUN to finish her diploma in Corporate Development. She will then pursue a master’s degree in Foreign Languages to become an interpreter.
Here is what PCUN’s Secretary-Treasurer had to say about Zoe’s contributions:
“Zoe has left a permanent mark at PCUN. And I mean this in a literal way too. In fact, Zoe is one of two people who are pictured in the CLI’s mural. Her story is already being told during the many tours we conduct of our beautiful buildings. But her biggest impact can’t be measured by what people will see when they look at that mural. Her biggest impact will be felt by those families she worked with with so they can attain their permanent residence. It will be felt by the children and grandchildren of these parents, who will have the stability to pursue dreams similar to Zoe’s”
Merci beaucoup Zoe!
Juan Diego Ramos- PCUN Intern