Teen Who Wrote About Immigrant Dad’s ICE Detention in Application Celebrates Early Harvard Admission

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A California high school senior and daughter of immigrants is celebrating an early admission to Harvard University. “It was just an insane amount of emotion. I never felt that way before,” Cielo Echegoyen told Inside Edition.

The road to the Ivy League university has not been easy.

Cielo is one of six children born to immigrant parents from Mexico. Her dad was detained by ICE when she was a junior, which the teen says was a “huge part” of her application to the school.

There were other hardships to overcome. Her mom lost her job as a seamstress because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Her assistant principal, Jennifer Huynh, was one of her biggest cheerleaders.

“It’s so wonderful to see her dreams come true,” Huynh said.

Cielo plans to major in biology at Harvard. She wants to become an oncologist.

“You never know unless you try, and it's so much better to try and to shoot for the stars than to stay with the doubt,” Cielo said.


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