My (Underground) American Dream: My True Story as an Undocumented Immigrant Who Became a Wall Street Executive

My (Underground) American Dream: My True Story as an Undocumented Immigrant Who Became a Wall Street Executive

by Julissa Arce


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A National Bestseller!

What does an undocumented immigrant look like? What kind of family must she come from? How could she get into this country? What is the true price she must pay to remain in the United States?

JULISSA ARCE knows firsthand that the most common, preconceived answers to those questions are sometimes far too simple-and often just plain wrong.

On the surface, Arce's story reads like a how-to manual for achieving the American dream: growing up in an apartment on the outskirts of San Antonio, she worked tirelessly, achieved academic excellence, and landed a coveted job on Wall Street, complete with a six-figure salary. The level of professional and financial success that she achieved was the very definition of the American dream. But in this brave new memoir, Arce digs deep to reveal the physical, financial, and emotional costs of the stunning secret that she, like many other high-achieving, successful individuals in the United States, had been forced to keep not only from her bosses, but even from her closest friends.

From the time she was brought to this country by her hardworking parents as a child, Arce-the scholarship winner, the honors college graduate, the young woman who climbed the ladder to become a vice president at Goldman Sachs-had secretly lived as an undocumented immigrant. In this surprising, at times heart-wrenching, but always inspirational personal story of struggle, grief, and ultimate redemption, Arce takes readers deep into the little-understood world of a generation of undocumented immigrants in the United States today- people who live next door, sit in your classrooms, work in the same office, and may very well be your boss. By opening up about the story of her successes, her heartbreaks, and her long-fought journey to emerge from the shadows and become an American citizen, Arce shows us the true cost of achieving the American dream-from the perspective of a woman who had to scale unseen and unimaginable walls to get there.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781455540266
Publisher: Center Street
Publication date: 09/19/2017
Pages: 320
Sales rank: 275,867
Product dimensions: 5.20(w) x 7.90(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

JULISSA ARCE is a writer, speaker, and social-justice advocate. She is the cofounder and chairman of the Ascend Educational Fund, a college scholarship and mentorship program that assists immigrant students, regardless of their immigration status, ethnicity, or national origin. Julissa is also a board member for the National Immigration Law Center and for College Spring. Prior to becoming an advocate, she built a successful career on Wall Street, working at Goldman Sachs and Merrill Lynch.

Table of Contents

Preface xi

Prologue. The Attack 1

Part I "Undocumented" 7

1 Home Alone 9

2 The Last Drop 21

3 Strangers 29

4 Strangers No More 40

5 You're an Illegal Now 51

6 Decisions, Decisions 65

7 The Accident 80

8 The Wall 92

Part II The Road to the Street 99

9 Opportunity 101

10 Normal-ish 110

11 Walking Papers 123

12 Race to the Offer 137

13 The Offer 151

14 Big Time 161

15 Setting Sail 172

16 Seasons of Change 188

17 Concrete Jungle 198

18 The Call 208

Part III Redeemed 217

19 The Proposal 219

20 Going Home 230

21 Happy 239

22 When It Rains, It Pours 245

23 The End 251

24 The Odyssey 259

25 Out of the Darkness 265

26 Connecting the Dots 271

27 Redeemed 280

Postscript 291

Acknowledgments 293

Resources 295

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My (Underground) American Dream: My True Story as an Undocumented Immigrant Who Became a Wall Street Executive 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Julissa is great at making her feel all those emotions some people have never experienced before. Great content.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved her story about overcoming challenges and achieving her dreams!