Local Politics

Community colleges uphold ban on illegal immigrants

Posted August 15, 2008

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— North Carolina community college officials approved a motion Friday to uphold a ban on admitting illegal immigrants while they study the issue and determine a long-term policy.

In May, the North Carolina Board of Community Colleges directed its 58 colleges to deny admission to illegal immigrants because officials were concerned that admitting them violated federal law.

A recent Department of Homeland Security notice, however, said the federal government does not prohibit community colleges from admitting illegal immigrants to degree programs.

Eleven of the 16 members at the meeting voted in favor of upholding the ban, which applies only to new enrollment. Undocumented students who were registered prior to May 13 can continue their academic program.

The board will also hire an outside consultant to help establish the policy and how to enforce it. Members say they expect to have a policy in place by next August.

"This board and this system have been changing positions on this subject too many times. We need to know how other states are handling this issue," Dr. Stuart B. Fountain, chairman of the North Carolina Community College System's Policy Committee, said.

"We are not in this issue alone. We need to gather information. We need to know how to navigate the mind field of legal entanglement of this issue."

The North Carolina Association of Community College Presidents supports a policy of the University of North Carolina system that admits undocumented immigrants who graduated from U.S. high schools.

Out of North Carolina's 800,000 students in the community college system, about 112 are recognized as being illegal immigrants.

Some community college officials indicated Thursday they would like North Carolina to return to its previous "open door" policy, which allowed all applicants to enroll, regardless of their residency status.

"While many of these students may not have arrived in the United States legally, many of them came as minors," community college system President Dr. Scott Ralls said. "And for what it's worth, I have difficulty with the notion of punishing minors for the actions of their parents."

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  • labaholt Aug 15, 2008

    As a U.S. citizen and a NC native, I do not agree with this decision. I think that many people overlook the positive contributions that the immigrants have made. By getting rid of all the "illegals", the American economy and the lifestyles that many Americans enjoy will be impacted greatly. “Through their labor, they produce the many luxuries to which we have grown accustomed - clean offices and classrooms, tasty and inexpensive food at restaurants and in grocery stores, new homes, and a well-equipped military” Garcia Hernandez, C.C., (2008). No human being is illegal. Monthly Review. June 2008.

  • ncxphotos Aug 15, 2008

    Ilegal measns against the law as in criminal. What is soooooooo hard to understand about that? What would you want to support someone who is breaking the law. Doesn't that make you an accessory?

  • Scubagirl Aug 15, 2008

    rand321 - "But many chose to ignore the facts. When traveling to visit with my family through out NC and SC...those against immigration are at heart do not like brown skinned folks with hispanic names. Its racism all over again, just with different folks."
    Sorry rand-you are wrong. It has nothing to do w/ racism rather my tax dollars supporting those who are not here legally-I don't care what color they are.

    if the shoefits has summed it up rather comprehensively as far as I'm concerned.

    If you want the perks of being in US then come here, register or whatever, get YOUR OWN ss#, pay taxes while you work and EARN what we have had to earn.

    buco says "according to the bill of rights we all have a right to be educated and prosper"
    well I believe that's for US citizens......

  • bryanclaire2 Aug 15, 2008

    They better understand that the illegals no longer can sponge off this country. Our immigration laws are pathetic, and if we get all that are for giving them a pass, and whatever they want to hand to them, I say your job as a representative of this great state will be over , I do hope you get it because the people who came here legally are being short changed, and that is so unfair. Get the immigration dept. in order, and start doing the job this dept. was intended for get them out of this state. Who will pick the fields you say? Well you better figure that out because if you hire them you are as guilty,and should be punished along with the illegals.

  • james27613 Aug 15, 2008

    Those that are not here legally are taking up seats in
    class for those that are legal.

    Put the illegals on a wait list.
    If and only if no legal student wants the class then the
    illegal can take it.

  • waste-of-time Aug 15, 2008

    no rogers, if you crossed the border without papers, you can't start the process to become a citizen while in the US.

  • rogers922 Aug 15, 2008

    rogers, thats lovely but you cant just walk up to USCIS and ask to become a citizen...

    BUT they can certainly start the process to be here legally.

  • napdog123 Aug 15, 2008

    GOOD RULING! NOW THESE ARE THE TYPE PEOPLE WHO SHOULD BE OUR POLITICIANS!!!!!

  • waste-of-time Aug 15, 2008

    rogers, thats lovely but you cant just walk up to USCIS and ask to become a citizen...

  • Iworkforaliving Aug 15, 2008

    I'm happy now, how about you?

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