A Tale of Two Immigrants

By Larry Teren


Some immigration stories turn out well; others, just plain make you shake your head.  Take these two people and learn from them:  Gac Filipat (pronounced Gus Felipi) and Eduardo Saverin.

Mr. Filipat came to this country from Yugoslavia twenty years ago. He took a job as a custodian at Columbia University because they offered up to fourteen free college credits a year for employees. Columbia only accepts ten percent of applicants a year. He took them up on it while he went about his business of cleaning toilets and the like. By the way, a full year’s tuition at Columbia as of 2011 was pegged at $45,290. Slightly more than half the students were entitled to some type of financial assistance to a maximum of $40,259.

Gac came to this country speaking little English but ended up taking a heavy dose of English literature classics. He has fulfilled only half of his dream. He intends to stay on as a custodian and continue with graduate courses which are also payment exempt for employees. Not bad for a man of 52, huh? Continue reading “A Tale of Two Immigrants”