UMD hires new admin to 'protect' illegal immigrant students
The University of Maryland is creating an “undocumented student coordinator” position to support illegal immigrant students in response to student concerns about Trump’s policies on immigration.
The opening of the position was in response to student group ProtectUMD’s demands last semester for "a full-time Undocumented Student Coordinator to advocate for, advise, represent, and protect undocumented and DACAmented students,” reports The Diamondback.
“We are assigning a UMD staff person to...address the immediate needs of the undocumented student population."
Katie Lawson, a spokesperson for the university, said UMD will be assigning a staff member to serve as the new coordinator.
“As part of the university's ongoing commitment to undocumented students…We are assigning a UMD staff person to serve as a coordinator to address the immediate needs of the undocumented student population," Lawson stated. "We will continue to assess the need for staff support moving forward."
Georgetown University appointed a staff member to a similar position during the fall semester.
Erica Fuentes, a UMD student and the president of Political Latinxs United for Movement and Action in Society told The Washington Post that a coordinator could help illegal immigrant students who want to apply to state schools.
“Applying to a state institution can be difficult for undocumented students,” Fuentes said. “A lot of times college applications require students to disclose personal information about themselves, oftentimes [asking] residency questions and things like that.”
A coordinator could also give “emotional counsel and support,” Fuentes explained, because “undocumented students face a lot of issues because they’re balancing going to school, oftentimes paying their tuition entirely out of pocket because they don’t qualify for financial aid.”
In addition to the coordinator, UMD will also be creating an “undocumented student work group” as well as a web page with resources for illegal immigrant students.
Campus Reform reached out to Lawson for more information on the undocumented student coordinator’s responsibilities and salary, but did not receive a response by press time.
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