Thursday, May 7, 2015

They Win: DREAMers Get In-State Tuition at Arizona Universities

Posted By on Thu, May 7, 2015 at 11:19 AM

click to enlarge DREAMers and allies celebrating the Maricopa judge's ruling yesterday at the UA. - COURTESY OF SCHOLARSHIPS AZ
  • Courtesy of Scholarships AZ
  • DREAMers and allies celebrating the Maricopa judge's ruling yesterday at the UA.

The Arizona Board of Regents is giving DREAMers in-state tuition at the state's three public universities. A Tuesday ruling by a Maricopa Superior Court Judge siding with DACA recipients influenced their decision.

Scholarships A-Z, an advocacy group for DREAMers who has been at their side in this years-long fight, sent out this press release:
We as ScholarshipsA-Z, along with other community organizations and supporters across Arizona, applaud the Arizona Board of Regents for making the right decision. By choosing to comply with the law and charge in-state tuition to DACA recipients, the doors to Arizona’s 3 public universities are opened wider. This decision from the ABOR means that talented individuals across Arizona will now have the opportunity to attend or transfer to exceptional universities.

“As a DACA recipient and current student at Pima Community College, I feel at ease to know that I will be able to attend the University of Arizona with instate rates. I will be able to attend a great school of engineering, and at a more affordable rate than I ever could.” – Dario Andrade, Community Outreach Director ScholarshipsA-Z. (I spoke with  Dario last week, here.)

Today was a victory for all DACA recipients led by the collective efforts of ScholarshipsA-Z, Arizona Dream Act Coalition, Arizona Dreamers in Action, No More Deaths Flagstaff, ASU Graduate & Professional Student Association, and countless supporters across the state. We are in this pivotal moment because of DACA and undocumented students’ courage to share their stories, and remind us that education is a right for everyone. Arizona’s colleges and universities are matching their courage with the decision to grant instate tuition to DACA students.

“We know that this decision is a victory. However, we know that it will only affect those individuals that have been granted DACA. We will continue to fight for access to education for all students, including undocumented students seeking a higher education or a GED.” – Manuel Natera, DACA Coordinator, ScholarshipsA-Z

ScholarshipsA-Z is committed to working with ABOR to implement this change to the fullest extent, at all 3 universities. We encourage DACA students across the state to reach out to take advantage of this moment. ASU, NAU, and UA are options for DACA students to attain a higher education.

ABOR sent this statement:
"The board remains committed to affordable access to higher education for all eligible students. The board is also committed to compliance with state and federal law.

The Maricopa County  Superior Court has ruled that a Deferred  Action for Childhood Arrivals recipient who represents an Employment Authorization Document and who meets Arizona law residency requirements is eligible for resident tuition. (State of  Arizona v. Maricopa County Community College District).

The Board of Regents will interpret its policies in accordance with this ruling. This will allow DACA students with an Employment Authorization Document who meet the statutory and policy requirements for residency to establish in-state residency tuition purposes at our Arizona universities."
Congratulations, DREAMers. This is historic. 

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