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Chancellor Blank: Repealing DACA puts promising students at risk

September 5, 2017

Update – Sept. 6

Earlier this week the Attorney General announced that the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program will be phased out by March 5. President Trump has asked Congress to take up legislation that would address this issue.

UW System President Ray Cross has written in support of permanent residency status for these affected young people. UW–Madison is also engaging in discussions with our Congressional representatives and will continue to work toward a positive solution that ensures affected students and staff can continue pursuing their education and careers here.

It is also important to note that UW–Madison does not collect information on participants in DACA. Further information and resources are listed below.


Chancellor Rebecca M. Blank released the following statement on Tuesday, Sept. 5:

Like our colleagues in the Association of American Universities (AAU) and the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU), we oppose President Trump’s decision to repeal the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Repealing DACA puts at risk a group of promising students at UW­-Madison and at higher education institutions across the country.

DACA allows undocumented immigrants brought to the United States as children to remain here lawfully. These “dreamer” students seek only what we all want for our children: the opportunity to pursue an education and a fulfilling career. These members of our campus community contribute substantially to UW–Madison. They work hard, they pay taxes, and they are important to the vibrant life of the campus community. To threaten them now with deportation is unfair and, indeed not in our country’s best interest as businesses in Wisconsin and beyond continue to struggle to find workers in almost all occupations.

We urge the administration and our congressional representatives to find a balanced approach that does not jeopardize the ability of our students to pursue their dreams and does not run counter to the core principles that our nation has held since its founding. We plan to communicate directly with members of Congress on this issue and also work with AAU, APLU and other organizations in hopes that a positive resolution can be reached.

We will also provide support to students. Members of the campus community seeking information on these issues are encouraged to contact the Multicultural Student Center (MSC), International Student Services (ISS) or International Faculty and Staff Services (IFSS).

In addition, we are reiterating information we shared late last year on our policies and practices:

  • UW-Madison will not provide information on immigration status of its students, faculty or staff unless required to do so under force of law.
  • The UW–Madison Police Department (UWPD) will not participate in immigration enforcement actions conducted by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers (ICE). Our resources are limited and such enforcement is not part of UWPD’s mission, duties or philosophy. UWPD will only participate in immigration-related investigations if an individual has committed serious crimes which impact the campus.
  • U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers must use appropriate legal processes if they are on campus and wish to contact individual students about enforcement-related issues. For example, they generally cannot enter an on-campus private residence without a proper warrant.

To learn more about existing resources or the challenges these students are facing, we recommend connecting with one of the following:

Dreamers @ UW–Madison

Student organization advocating for undocumented/DACAmented students pursuing higher education

Latino Education Council

Dane County nonprofit dedicated to educational advancement of Latino community regardless of cultural or linguistic background

Centro Hispano

Dane County nonprofit providing wrap-around supports for Latino and immigrant communities, serving up to 5,000 households annually