About Our Work
Our mission is to ensure that all young people grow up understanding migration as a fundamental characteristic of the human condition, in order to develop the knowledge, empathy and mindsets that sustain inclusive and welcoming communities.
We live in an era of mass migration. Young people – whether they are part of an arriving or receiving culture – strive to form their identities as learners, community members, and change-makers in the context of this global phenomenon. We are catalyzing a community of educational leaders and social organizations around making migration a part of their curriculum and culture (in both formal and informal learning settings) so that all students can feel supported in their social, emotional, academic, and civic growth.
From our very origins, the human journey has been shaped by migration. For over 170,000 years human beings have been on the move and today—with 250 million international migrants and 750 internal migrants—migrations are reshaping the world. While foundational to the human experience, across space and time, when large numbers of newcomers arrive, bringing new languages and customs, they are often met with skepticism and distrust.
Twenty-six percent of children under the age of 18 in the United States, a total of 18.7 million children, have an immigrant parent. Indeed, the world over, the success of the children of immigrants is essential to our shared future. Education, in and out of school, will play a foundational role in helping to nurture democracy.
In the U.S., migration is both history and destiny. From the histories of the First Nations of native peoples, to European explorers seeking treasure and religious freedom, to the mass involuntary migrations of enslaved Africans, to the trans-oceanic migrations of yesterday and the ongoing global migrations of today, migration defines the American experience. Migration is an important story of how the country came to be in its present form and a determinant of our future. Indeed, today 26 percent of American children under 18 are of immigrant origin. Their transition to citizenship, to the economy and to the tapestry of the nation will shape the future of the country and the world.
Re-Imagining Migration was founded in July 2017 by Adam Strom, the former Director of Scholarship and Innovation at Facing History and Ourselves, and pioneering scholars of immigration and education, Carola Suarez-Orozco, the Co-Director of the Institute for Immigration, Globalization & Education at UCLA and Marcelo Suarez-Orozco, the Wasserman Dean of the Graduate School of Education and Information Sciences at UCLA. We have been joined by Harvard Graduate School of Education’s Veronica Boix Mansilla, a Principal Investigator at Project Zero. Follow this link to learn more about our team.
Educating young people to learn to live with, work with, and respect our differences is essential for the survival of democracy. Educational settings, museums, after-school settings, and libraries, are pivotal institutions that shape students’ lives. We provide the adults who teach and guide young people, in and out of formal educational settings, with new tools to think about migration in compassionate ways and with the most effective learning opportunities and resources possible. To this urgent work, we bring an accomplished record of research and effective program implementation, a growing network of networks, a nimble approach that allows us to pilot, test, scale, and disseminate strategies of understanding and empowerment.
To address this wicked challenge and scale solutions, we recognize that we need to begin our work by focusing on the adults who serve youth in formal and informal educational settings. In just over a year of work, we have begun catalyzing a community of educational leaders and social organizations around recognizing migration a part of their curriculum and culture so that all students can feel supported in their social, emotional, academic, and civic growth.