Walk to Raleigh Day 2: Who's Walking - myfoxcarolinas.com

Walk to Raleigh Day 2: Who's Walking

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Three students are walking from Charlotte to Raleigh to rally for state legislators to grant in-state tuition for undocumented students. The group left from the Latin American Coalition Monday. They plan to walk for 9 days. Here's a closer look at who's walking.


Mary Espinosa is a junior at UNC Charlotte. She's studying sociology. She wants to become a community organizer to help immigrants.

Mary is a US citizen, so she pays in-state tuition. She says she's not walking for herself, but for all her friends and other undocumented students. Mary believes our state will suffer if students are not able to get a higher education.

Nineteen year old Jessica Contreras is graduating from North Meck High School this Friday. She's walking not only for herself, but all undocumented students facing out-of-state tuition to go to college.

Jessica has been living in Charlotte with her family since 2001. She attended Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools since Kindergarten.

Jessica is the middle child of five siblings.

Rafael Santiago is a rising junior at Phillip L Berry High School. The 16 year old joined the trek 1/4th the way into the first day. He was finishing up his state tests before he could throw on his hiking shoes.

He's walking to ensure he'll be able to continue his education once he graduates. He's asking for in-state tuition so he and his classmates don't have to face a financial barrier when pursuing college.

Rafael has been living in North Carolina for the past nine years. He lives with his older sister. His mother returned to Mexico last year.

Elver Barrios is the unofficial leader of the group. He's a junior at Johnson C Smith University. Elver works at the Latin American Coalition as a community organizer. This is his first "caminata" or long walk.

He graduated from West Meck High School in 2009. Elver says he couldn't afford out-of-state tuition, so he did not attend college for 2.5 years. Finally, the 3.7 GPA student received a merit scholarship from the Johnson C Smith University.

He says this walk is for all the undocumented students who are going through the same thing he did: graduating high school with no possibility to go to college.

Monday the group walked 17.6 miles. Read about the group's first day of walking here.

Digital Journalist Caroline Fountain is walking with the group, documenting their journey. You can follow Caroline on twitter, Facebook, and Instagram to follow along as they walk to Raleigh.


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