Note on the DACA Litigation (11/19/19)

Dear Campus Community,

On November 12, the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments on the decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Lawrence was one of 164 colleges and universities from across the country who signed an amicus brief in support of the litigation to uphold the program. While the Supreme Court could issue a ruling any time until the end of June 2020, many of us on campus are reading news stories that attempt to discern the court’s potential leanings. I can only imagine how unsettling this news may be to members of our community whose life at Lawrence and beyond could be affected by potential changes to this program.

In light of this uncertain moment, we encourage members of our community to share any questions or concerns about your status or the DACA program with Kimberly Barrett, vice president for diversity and inclusion, Brittany Bell, assistant dean of students and director of the Diversity and Intercultural Center, or Leah McSorley, associate dean of students for international student services. Resources for students, faculty, and staff are also available on our website. Confidential counseling is also available at the Wellness Center and at the Center for Spiritual and Religious Life.

The university remains committed to supporting every student on our campus regardless of their immigration status. We will continue to offer institutional financial aid for students who do not hold a U.S. passport. We will continue to recruit faculty and staff from around the world, and we will continue to provide support and resources to undocumented students and ones with global backgrounds.  

A core value of this university is to ensure that Lawrence remains open to academically prepared students from all backgrounds. We are proud of our immigrant community and we are proud to support the national efforts to sustain their opportunity to succeed and thrive here at Lawrence. In the words of the brief we signed, “[We] have seen firsthand the positive effects of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals… [T]housands of talented and hard-working young people have made significant and wide-ranging contributions to [our] campuses. They form a key part of our campus life and as institutions we benefit greatly from the energy and academic excellence they bring.”