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The community of Roosevelt University is deeply concerned by President Trump’s termination of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. It is un-American to end the protection of 800,000 young people who were brought to our country by parents seeking refuge for their families from war or political oppression, or seeking freedom and opportunity for their children. These are the same reasons generations of immigrants have come to the United States for over 200 years.

Our University was founded on the firm belief that access to education be open to all regardless of race, religion, ethnicity, gender or economic status. At Roosevelt, we are committed to helping Dreamers in their quest to obtain a college degree, and will continue to assist them in their pursuit and respect them as valid members of our community, treating them with dignity and value for all they contribute to our society and community.

This past year I signed, along with the presidents of 600 colleges and universities, a statement supporting both undocumented students and the BRIDGE (Bar Removal of Individuals Who Dream and Grow our Economy) Act legislation. Working with Roosevelt’s OASIS (Outreach, Advocacy, Social Justice, Information and Safety) Committee, we will advocate with our state legislators for swift congressional action to protect undocumented students. I encourage all members of our community to contact our U.S. senators and representatives and urge them to actively oppose this decision to rescind DACA.

I want to reassure those affected by this decision that Roosevelt will ensure the privacy of student records, including immigration status, consistent with state and federal laws under the Family Educational Right and Privacy Act (FERPA). We will not release student records without written consent from the student or a lawfully issued subpoena, warrant or judicial order. If you have questions, please contact the Office of Multi-Cultural Support Services at 312-341-3875 or multiculturalsvcs@roosevelt.edu.

Providing support to our students is our utmost priority and as such, we have arranged for immediate on-campus resources to be available this Friday, Sept. 8 from 12–2 p.m. in WB 616/ SCH 311An attorney from Lavelle Law will present on DACA and potential next steps for those impacted. In addition, plan to join us next week at our second annual American Dream Reconsidered Conference, which begins with a panel discussion on immigration titled, Coming to America: Immigration in a New World. 

Lastly, I want to reaffirm that Roosevelt will uphold our legacy by welcoming all qualified students without regard to their immigration status and will continue to admit students without discrimination because of national origin. We remain steadfast in our commitment to social justice and in protecting our mission to provide access to education for all. Together, we must take action to affirm the human worth of every individual.

Ali Malekzadeh,

President, Roosevelt University

Susanne McLaughlin,
Co-Chair, OASIS Committee

Steven Marchi,
Co-Chair, OASIS Committee

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