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Supporting Our DACA Students

Picture of campus

September 8, 2017

With the Sept. 5 announcement that the Trump administration plans to terminate the federal Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program in six months, I am reaching out to reiterate South Seattle College’s commitment to our students impacted by this decision, and provide useful information as we navigate a period of uncertainty. 

DACA—an executive order signed by President Barack Obama in 2012—allows certain minors who enter this country as children of undocumented immigrants to stay here legally for a renewable two-year period.  All students, including those in this program, deserve a safe and respectful learning environment that is free from harassment of any kind, and providing that environment is essential to our college mission. These students are part of the fabric of our campus community.  They are our neighbors, our friends and our relatives, and when they succeed, they make our communities stronger.  Many have no memory of the country their parents came from, and they have not willfully violated the law to be here.

South Seattle College joined Washington State’s baccalaureate institutions and other 33 community and technical colleges to issue a joint statement expressing our profound disappointment with the DACA announcement and urging Congress to preserve the program, which you can read here

Listed below are resources and information (both on-campus and in our community) to aid our students who have questions and concerns:

Student Resources on Campus

Serving Undocumented Individuals at South

  • South has no legal obligation to enforce federal immigration law.  Consistent with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), South will not release protected student information without a lawfully issued subpoena or court order.
  • South Campus Security has not, and will not choose to participate with Immigration Officers seeking student records.
  • South Campus Security does not question people about their immigration status and does not detain anyone because they are undocumented.
  • South does not require information about citizenship for college admissions. 
  • Undocumented students in Washington State have the right to attend colleges and universities, and may qualify for state-funded financial aid because of the Washington Dream Act.  You can learn more about qualifications here.

Community Resources

For federal information on changes to DACA from the Dept. of Homeland Security, please visit this FAQ site.

Please know that South is closely monitoring DACA developments and will communicate important information as we learn it in a timely manner.

Thank you,

Peter Lortz
Interim President
South Seattle College