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University response to decision to rescind DACA

- Following is a message from President Morton Schapiro to the Northwestern community

The decision announced today by U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions to rescind the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program is deeply disappointing. The students and young adults who were brought to this country as children have grown up here, and many of them are working, serving in the military or attending college. To now make these valuable members of our society subject to potential deportation is both cruel and economically shortsighted.

President Trump has called on Congress to enact legislation that will address this issue. We urge Congress to do so. As president of Northwestern and as an economist, I have consistently been a strong advocate for passage of the DREAM Act, which would provide legal protection for these individuals. The University will continue to make its position clear through letters, petitions and discussions with our elected representatives.

Last year, Northwestern University announced that it would provide significantly increased financial aid for undocumented undergraduates who attended and graduated from a U.S. high school, providing the same University-funded scholarship assistance to those students as we do to U.S. citizens. Next week, we will welcome more undocumented students to campus as members of this fall’s entering class. We’re pleased that our initiative enabled those students to attend Northwestern, and we are committed to maintaining this policy. I strongly believe that one of our responsibilities as a leading academic institution is to provide opportunities to these highly qualified students, regardless of their immigration status. That will not change.

Northwestern will continue to protect the safety and security of all our students and to offer special assistance to undocumented students who have questions about their legal status.

At the same time, we will work with the Association of American Universities and other academic organizations to make our position clear to the Administration and Congress. There can be no question that it now is time to find a humane, just solution to this pressing societal issue.

Morton Schapiro
President and Professor