NASPA – Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education proudly supports United We Dream (UWD) by encouraging college educators to publicly showcase their support for and work with undocumented college students on National Educator Coming Out Day , April 9th 2014. As NASPA works in support of the Association's public policy agenda, we are pleased to join students and administrators in addressing the critical issue of supporting undocumented college student success.
As a part of the DREAM Educational Empowerment Program (DEEP), a project of UWD’s immigration-focused, youth-led network comprising 51 affiliate organizations in 25 states, National Educator Coming Out Day charges educators to be proud and open about supporting and working alongside undocumented students. Supporters have taken to Twitter, and Facebook since NASPA’s Annual Conference last month, posting pictures and selfies with the words “I’m with & for undocumented students. Where u at?” and will continue to circulate pictures in the coming week with the accompanying hashtags #educatorsOUT and #uwdDEEP.
Undocumented students face a multitude of issues in higher education, largely due to pervasive problems existing in current immigration laws and inequitable policies in admissions, tuition, and financial aid. Addressing these issues, DEEP is a catalyst for educational justice and empowerment for immigrant students.
DEEP educates, connects, and empowers immigrant students, parents and educators to close the opportunity gap and engage in local efforts to improve educational equity. This project seeks to lay the groundwork that advances the educational justice movement in the U.S. by focusing resources and research on the needs and realities of immigrant students in order to increase educational attainment rates. DEEP’s focus for 2014 is to engage national partnerships in policy changes and support UWD affiliates in their local outreach.
NASPA, through commentary by its Research and Policy Institute (RPI) and the advocacy of its Public Policy Division, is committed to understanding the needs of undocumented students, providing educational programs and services to help members navigate the undocumented student policy landscape while supporting those interested in being involved in advocacy work on their campus and in their states. One such activity include NASPA’s partnership with the National Forum on Higher Education for the Public Good hosting a webinar during the summer 2013, covering the complex set of federal policies that impact higher education policy and practice in support of undocumented students.
NASPA, a longtime champion of the DREAM Act and wide-scale immigration reform, furthered its commitment to support undocumented students in higher education by endorsing and commenting on the proposal of the Investing IN States to Achieve Tuition Equity (IN-STATE) for Dreamers Act of 2014. What’s more, NASPA’s RPI will stay abreast of and engage in forthcoming advocacy activities regarding the renewal process for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), a temporary two-year program established in 2012 under which over half a million undocumented youth have received temporary relief from deportation. These efforts offer a few notable steps in NASPA’s historic support of undocumented students and the Association’s public policy agenda.
National Coming Out Day and the larger DEEP project are two impactful ways UWD strives to attain its current priority which is to win relief for the entire undocumented community and end senseless abuses and deportations. For more information about how you can get involved with DEEP as an institution or organization, please access the DEEP website, here.