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Identity in America talk at Mercer focuses on immigration

MACON, Ga. -- Mercer University opened up the conversation about immigration on Tuesday night.

The school is hosting a series of talks called "Identity in America." A Mercer alum spoke about being undocumented in the country.

Raymond Partolan was one year old when he came to the U.S. from the Philippines with a visa.

At age 10 he said the government denied his dad permanent residency and his whole family's status changed to undocumented.

It wasn't until he was in high school that he started to feel like a "second-class citizen" and attempted suicide.

Now he works with "Asian Americans Advancing Justice" in Atlanta and makes it his mission to educate people about immigrants.

"It is so uplifting to me to be able to come out to finally just bare it all, to talk about the challenges I've faced in my life," Partolan said.

He hopes his story will inspire others to think differently about immigrants in America.

Other panelists at Mercer included immigration lawyer Charles Kuck. He sued the state of Georgia to allow undocumented immigrants to receive in-state tuition.

Right now the case is on hold but he hopes by the end of the semester that will change.

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