The debate surrounding the relationship between illegal immigrants and various academic institutions across the United States has been one of extreme length, divisive rhetoric, and emotional turmoil. However, while this issue remains present and prolific from the West to the East Coast, it manifests itself within the University of California system.
Recently, the regents in the University of California academic system decided to implement a policy that places limitations on the amount of out-of-state, American citizens it accepts, while leaving the issue of enrolling illegal immigrants untouched and unaddressed. According to Fox News, this policy, known as Regents Policy 2109, is a “response to state lawmakers threatening to withhold from the university system nearly $20 million if school officials didn’t cap the number of out-of-state American students. The university’s response to the state government’s threat was to limit the percentage of out-of-state American students in the student body to 18 percent on most campuses.”
It is understandable that the University of California primarily focuses on admitting California students since they are a conglomerate of public academic institutions aimed at providing a quality education for those residing in California. However, illegal immigrants are in this country illegally, and therefore, by their criminal status, should not have access to institutions that are privately or publicly funded.
The goal of the University of California should be aimed at providing American citizens with the quality education they need to succeed and positively contribute our country’s economic growth in their later lives. Out-of-state students are still American citizens, regardless of the geographic territory they reside in within the United States. Truncating these students’ potentiality for admittance while leaving illegal immigrant admittance rates untouched is a travesty and should upset every American citizen. Currently, 16.5% of University of California students are from out-of-state, and it’s estimated that there are 3,700 illegal immigrants currently admitted.
All institutions in the United States, regardless of whether they are for-profit or nonprofit, should operate on the premise of providing American citizens with the goods and services they need to benefit, supplement, and improve their lives. The University of California, a publicly funded academic system, is no different, and should rearrange its priorities to place an unrelenting emphasis on providing quality educational services to American citizens, not individuals who are in this country illegally.
It should not come as a surprise that the University of California is issuing this policy. After all, students at the University of California, Irvine, were allowed to collectivize and start a petition to remove the border patrol from a career fair being hosted on campus. Apparently, the mere presence of the border patrol was enough to unsettle the 500 illegal immigrants attending the University of California, Irvine, even though the border patrol had no intention of finding illegal immigrants and deporting them. Furthermore, a Fox News article entitled, “University of California digs in to fight Trump on illegal immigrant protections,” details the inherent bias and favoritism that Janet Napolitano, current head of California’s public university system, and her administration have towards illegal immigrants. Such predilections manifest themselves in the following statement from the above article:
“University of California will continue to admit illegal immigrants under the same criteria as U.S. citizens or permanent residents. Under Napolitano’s official new policy, campus police are not allowed to cooperate with local, state or federal law enforcement agencies to ‘investigate, detain, or arrest individuals for violation of federal immigration law.'”
As a student at a University of California school, I am extremely disappointed that the administration feels that it is more important to protect illegal immigrants than provide lucrative opportunities for American citizens, and I sincerely hope that things change in the near future.
To read more about the University of California’s policies and views towards illegal immigrants, click here.