Campus message regarding DACA—Sept. 2017

9/5/17 email to campus community

Dear Faculty, Staff, and Students,

We write with important news. As we feared, President Trump announced today his intention for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program to expire in six months, unless Congress intervenes. We are very disappointed and saddened by this decision.  We believe it is deeply-flawed educationally, wrong, and cruel. As you may know, we lobbied publicly to preserve this program, alongside most of the higher education community. It is unfortunate that this advocacy was unsuccessful.

We wrote to DACA students last winter and again last week to reaffirm Carleton's commitment to them, in the event that this program would be terminated. Those promises remain in full force and effect, and include:  

  • Carleton will support your enrollment as a DACA student.
  • We will continue to provide you with your full financial aid package.
  • In the event that your work authorization is not renewed, Carleton will provide extra funding, such that the College will make up for both what would have been your summer student employment contribution and student employment during the academic year.
  • If you encounter a situation where you require emergency funding even beyond your financial aid award, you may submit a request to cover these additional expenses to the Dean of Students Office. 
  • Beyond financial support, we are also eager to provide assistance through internal resources that you may have already utilized such as Student Health and Counseling Services, the Office of Intercultural and International Life, the Gender and Sexuality Center, among others. 
  • We will help connect you—through a dedicated website and other means—to non-campus resources such as immigration law clinics and community centers, and DACA focused initiatives.   

If you have additional ideas for how the Carleton community can support our students, please contact Carolyn Livingston.

Should Congress not act to protect DACA students by March 5, 2018, Carleton will be obliged to comply with the law which means returning to the kinds of recruitment and support activities we had in place prior to the institution of this program. These include recruiting students without inquiring about immigration status and treating undocumented students as international students for financial aid purposes. Further, consistent with past practice and commitment to student privacy, we will only share information about individual students when obligated to do so by court-ordered subpoena.  

For the same reasons we supported DACA, we fully expect in the coming months to join with the higher education community again to lobby Congress for a replacement program. We urge you to do the same, to contact your representatives and senators, and let them know your position on this issue.

Today’s announcement is creating unnecessary stress and concern for our DACA students and their families, but we remain hopeful and optimistic there will be a permanent solution coming out of Congress in short order. Our DACA students are valued members of the Carleton community. We want them here, and they deserve to be here.

Steven Poskanzer, President
Beverly Nagel
, Dean of the College
Carolyn H. Livingston
, Vice President for Student Life and Dean of Students