Amid uncertainty about the future of the country’s immigration laws under a Trump administration, Dartmouth is trying to reassure undocumented students that they’re welcome on campus — and that the school will try to protect them from potential changes in the law that might be in store.
Last week, Dartmouth President Philip Hanlon told students and staff that the school would “work within the bounds of the law to mitigate any effects on our students caused by possible revisions to DACA and other immigration policies.”
DACA refers to the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program established under President Obama, which provides protection from deportation to undocumented immigrants who came to the United States as children.
President-Elect Donald Trump, during the campaign, has pledged to rescind DACA upon taking office.
More than 200 college presidents from across the country, including Dartmouth’s President Hanlon, recently signed onto a letter asking the government to uphold and expand the program moving forward— calling it a “moral imperative and a national necessity.” At this point, Dartmouth is the only college in New Hampshire that is participating.
In their open letter, the college presidents noted that students who benefited from DACA have given back to their campuses as student leaders and to the country at large. They also offered to meet with government officials to present their case for why the program should be continued.
According to Dartmouth’s website, the school does not consider immigration status when deciding whether to accept or offer financial aid to non-international students.