Thuy Dam was born in Vietnam and immigrated to the United States in the 1980s, after moving through refugee camps in Thailand and the Philippines. Sponsored by her sister, Dam initially settled in Rowland Heights, California. She moved to Portland with her family in 2004. A certified medical assistant, Dam currently works with Providence Health Care. She is an active member of the Vietnamese Community of Oregon, helping fundraise and organize events. After struggling when she first arrived in California, Dam is passionate about making the transition to the United States more comfortable for recent immigrants.

Thuy Dam begins by giving an overview of her immigration from Vietnam, her difficulty in refugee camps, and her arrival in California. At the time, Dam spoke no English and struggled to adjust to life in the United States. Dam explains that in addition to night school she worked two jobs to provide for her family and carried a dictionary everywhere she went to learn English. After summarizing life in California, Dam speaks about moving to Oregon and the differences she noticed between the two states. Next, Dam discusses racial discrimination that her husband experienced at work and that her son experienced in school. From there, Dam speaks about her involvement with the Vietnamese Community of Oregon and talks a bit about her son’s experience growing up in the Vietnamese community.