Every week, Syracuse University professor Aileen Gallagher helps Longreads highlight the best of college journalism. Here’s this week’s pick:

Yanan Wang’s sympathetic story about undocumented students at Yale University begins with a strong image of a little boy, alone: ‘The first time he arrived in the United States, three-year-old Juan Cerda ’15 was on a truck tire floating across the Rio Grande river.’ The theme of loneliness permeates the story; all of the subjects Wang interviewed discuss feelings of isolation and secrecy. This is not an insignificant piece of reporting on Wang’s part. It’s difficult to find sources who, by virtue of the very thing that makes them newsworthy, wish to maintain their privacy. But not only did she find them, she got them to open up to her. These students entrusted their story to Wang, and she did right by them.

Undocumented but Unafraid

Yanan Wang | Yale Daily News | 14 minutes (3,575 words)


Professors and students: Share your favorite stories by tagging them with #college #longreads on Twitter, or email links to aileen@longreads.com.