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Charlotte College Grad In Immigration Limbo

(Updated Thursday, 10 a.m.) The House passed the Dream Act late Wednesday by a vote of 216 - 198. The Senate is expected to vote today. The measure would give undocumented students and soldiers a chance at legal status. WFAE's Julie Rose spoke with one of those youth. Next week, Sianneth Sanchez will graduate with her nursing degree from UNC Charlotte. She's spent countless hours on her studies. Her parents have spent thousands of dollars on tuition. But Sanchez has no plans to get a job. "Because, I mean, I know I can't," says Sanchez. "I'm not going to apply for a job when I know I can't legally work as a nurse." Sanchez came from Costa Rica with her parents when she was 11. They settled in Charlotte and stayed when their tourist visas ran out. She graduated from South Meck High school. Then, Queens University of Charlotte. Now UNC Charlotte - paying out-of-state tuition because of her undocumented status. Sanchez says her parents have received green cards, but she's still waiting. Under the DREAM Act, Sanchez would get citizenship because she was brought to the U.S. before she was 16 and attended school here. Otherwise, Sanchez's studies have led to a dead-end. "I guess the reason I've done it is because I'm not the kind of person that's just gonna stay at home and wait for something to fall out of the sky," explains Sanchez. "If the only thing I can do is prepare myself and be ready, then that's what I'll do, and that's what I've done." Critics of the DREAM Act say it could encourage other illegal immigrants to bring their children to the U.S. in order to access costly benefits. They say immigrants shouldn't be rewarded for breaking the law to come here. "I mean I was a little kid," replies Sanchex. "I was 11. I didn't have a choice." As far as she's concerned, Sanchez is an American. She just wants the chance to make it official. How NC's delegation voted: Butterfield (D) - Yes Coble (R) - No Etheridge (D) - Yes Foxx (R) - No Jones (R) - No Kissell (D) - No McHenry (R) - No McIntyre (D) - No Miller (D) - Yes Myrick (R) - No (Click here for Myrick statement) Price (D) - Yes Shuler (D) - No Watt (D) - Yes South Carolina: Barrett (R) - No Brown (R) - No Clybrun (D) - Yes Inglis (R) - Yes Spratt (D) - Yes Wilson (R) - No

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