Valedictorian Outed Herself as Undocumented, and the Internet Exploded

The valedictorian at a Texas high school had a 4.5 GPA, earning herself a full college scholarship. While working hard for four years to achieve that, she kept a secret.  Mayte Lara Ibarra of Austin revealed herself on Twitter after speaking at graduation, saying that she is an undocumented alien, the Washington Post reported. A screenshot of her tweet (she has since deactivated her account) shows her boasting her accomplishments while letting the world know what she kept hidden for so long.

Image via Twitter

Her tweet sparked an explosion of responses, both positive and negative. Many praised her achievements, as well as her bravery.

But others don’t care about her academic credentials, focusing solely on her immigration status.

And still others went so far as to threaten to report her to U.S. Immigration right away.

Clearly not expecting the reaction she got, Ibarra deleted her Twitter account and told KVUE that she lied about being undocumented. She later told the Statesman that she did indeed come to the country as an undocumented alien, but now has DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) status, which allows her to be here legally. “I do pay taxes, have a DACA which allows me to work and study here, and I have a social security number,” she explained.

Ibarra is 17 and has lived in this country for 15 years, she told the Statesman. She said her tweet was only meant to show pride in her accomplishments and support others who have to overcome odds. “I just wanted to show that no matter what barriers you have in front of you, you can still succeed,” she said.

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