“I am honored to have joined with hundreds of college and university presidents nationwide, including seven of my City University colleagues, in signing a statement in support of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and undocumented immigrant students.
This timely statement speaks to an important national consensus on the need to keep the doors of higher education open to the self-described “Dreamers” who came to this country as children or young teenagers and are now eager to secure for themselves a share in the American dream.
As the statement notes, since the start of DACA in 2012, we have seen the critical benefits of this program for our students, and its many significant impacts on our institutions and communities. Time and time again, Dreamers on our campuses have shown themselves to be exemplary student scholars and student leaders.
The City University of New York has a proud and longstanding tradition of serving our city’s immigrant population, a tradition that continues under Chancellor James Milliken. Under his leadership, the university launched the CUNY Immigrant Education Initiative, one of the priorities of which is to increase the number of available CUNY seats so that all 16,000 potentially DACA-eligible New Yorkers can enroll in an appropriate educational program.
In signing the DACA statement, I am proud to stand with Chancellor Milliken and several of my fellow CUNY campus presidents: Diana Bova Call (Queensborough Community College); Antonio Perez (Borough of Manhattan Community College); Michelle Anderson (Brooklyn College); Farley Herzek (Kingsborough Community College); José Luis Cruz (Lehman College), and Rudy Crew (Medgar Evers College). The urgency of our message to this country’s leaders could hardly be overstated or misconstrued: DACA should be upheld, continued and expanded.
The statement succinctly and correctly calls this “both a moral imperative and a national necessity.” These young Dreamers — raised and educated in the United States, and an important part of our national community — represent what is best about America, and are essential to our future.”
Click here to read the complete DACA statement and the list of signers.