State News

Community college panel OKs illegal immigrant enrollment

Posted September 17, 2009
Updated September 18, 2009

— A committee of the North Carolina Board of Community Colleges on Thursday approved a policy that would allow illegal immigrants to enroll at the two-year colleges.

A vote by the full board was expected Friday.

Protest against allowing illegal immigrants at community colleges Immigrant enrollment plan prompts protest

Under a proposed policy, students who aren't in the country legally but who graduated from a U.S. high school would have to pay out-of-state rates of about $7,000 a year. Also, lawful U.S. residents would have priority to crowded classrooms.

The country's third-largest community college system has changed its illegal immigrant admission policy four times since 2000. The latest look comes as laid-off workers fill classrooms.

Although the policy committee had little discussion of the proposal before unanimously approving it, about two dozen protesters gathered outside the Community College System offices to complain loudly about the plan.

"This is a very difficult economic time, where the focus and priority needs to be on suffering, innocent American families, not families that broke into our nation," said William Gheen, president of the Americans for Legal Immigration Political Action Committee.

Protesters encouraged passing drivers to honk in opposition to allowing illegal immigrants to attend North Carolina's 58 community colleges.

"Basically, it's our schools, our colleges," one protester said. "People that ... pay taxes should be attending these schools."

Latino advocacy groups hailed the proposal, saying it would continue North Carolina's tradition of higher education support for state residents.

"I do think today was a step in the right direction," longtime educator Nancy Gallman said. "What this simply means is that more and more students are driven to go to college. I don't see that as a problem for this state. I see that as something we should be proud of."

Gov. Beverly Perdue said in an interview this week with WRAL News that she doesn't believe people who are in the U.S. illegally should be in community college classrooms.

"In all honesty and with due respect to the Board of Community Colleges, it's hard for me to understand why we would give an education to those who can't work legally in the country," Perdue said. "Either way, it's a hard choice. Kids need an education, but if they can't work, why do it?"

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  • ibbott41 Sep 18, 2009

    As Americans, we have lost a very important battle.
    As a teacher in one community college here in North Carolina, I see first hand the abuse that is going on in our country by the illegal people.
    The majority of my students are illegal aliens and the few legal or American students compete very hard to get the jobs around the community, the illegal aliens are the lucky ones, some of them even have two jobs while the others who are very capable get nothing. A work force among illegal people does exist and is now a monopoly that is inherited by another illegal alien. This is the way they help each other.
    At our colleges, we had illegal students even before this vote. They use fake social security numbers, and since this morning, these students are already asking us to change their names and use their real names. We are getting orders from our bosses that it is all right for us to start making the changes and not only that but I heard some people telling students to expect an amnesty very

  • Professor Sep 18, 2009

    THE ONES THAT VOTED TO HAVE THE ILLEGALS ENTER OUR COMMUNITY COLLEGS AND OVERLOADING IT, THINK THEY MADE THE RIGHT DECISION. I HOPE IT WILL NOT COME BACK TO BITE THEM. :) YES WE NEED TO GET THEM OUT OF THE SEAT AND PUT THE RIGHT PEOPLE WHO WILL MAKE THE RIGHT DECISIONS IN THE SEAT.

    ILLEGALS SHOULD NOT BE ALLOW IN THE COMMUNITY COLLEGES. PERIOD!!!

  • walnutst2 Sep 18, 2009

    These children have only their ILLEGAL parents to blame. The ILLEGAL parents knew what they were doing! Once the ILLEGALS arrive in the United States with their ILLEGAL "children" they continue their invasion of the United States with the ABUSE of the 14th Amendment to create Anchors and more ILLEGALS for United States Citizens to furnish benefits!

  • walnutst2 Sep 18, 2009

    Just follow the MONEY. BIG EDUCATION, the Presidents of Colleges and Universities along with Education Union leaders, are the same as any other Elitist Political Contributors, Special Interest Groups and their Elitist Politicians. They are in it for the money and power and could care less for the United States Citizens men and women in the plants, on the factory floor, on the farms, or the offices working to pay for their children's education. The purpose is to pull in tuition fees for themselves and attempt to guarantee votes for their Elitist Politicians.

  • walnutst2 Sep 18, 2009

    The ILLEGALS do come to our nation realizing they will receive aid that their own government refuse to furnish often coached by representatives of their home countries before they enter the USA to “game” the system and then by their home countries representatives while they are ILLEGALS in the U.S. They may well become ILLEGALS with the noblest of intentions but it does not take long for them to catch on. The benefits the ILLEGALS receive from the taxpayers are used by the ILLEGAL EMPLOYERS as benefits for their ILLEGALS that they do not have to furnish. The Elitist Politicians, their Elitist Contributors, and Special Interest Groups mostly comprised of ILLEGAL EMPLOYERS are socializing benefits to the ILLEGALS, camouflaged as welfare for U. S. Citizens, on the backs of U.S. Citizens through our assets such as the Education System, Social Security, and Health Care not to mention our National Security while privatizing the profits for themselves.

  • Professor Sep 18, 2009

    BIGGEST MISTAKE MADE IN NC. TIME WILL TELL.

  • LambeauSouth Sep 18, 2009

    And further more, not allowing people to become educated benefits us HOW?

    It does not benefit us, but taking away seats to Legal Citizens
    does not either, and thus does not benefit the USA as a productive nation

  • JustOneGodLessThanU Sep 18, 2009

    Whatusay,

    Great job. You ignored hard data, offered no data of your own, stated that it’s “common sense” act this way, and then later said “you will never convince me”.

    How is any of what you did logical, scientific or open-minded? It’s not.

    What have you contributed to this discussion? Nothing.

  • familyfour Sep 18, 2009

    THE ROAD DIS LONG

    THANK YOU!

    And further more, not allowing people to become educated benefits us HOW?

  • rushbot Sep 18, 2009

    Let me see if I understand this. It seems there are 2 likely scenarios which may now happen. Scenario the first: Persons in violation of federal immigration law will admit to state employees (WHOSE SALARIES I BELIEVE ARE PAID WITH MY TAX DOLLARS!) that they are illegally in the United States, those state employees (WHOSE SALARIES I BELIEVE ARE PAID WITH MY TAX DOLLARS!!) will then IGNORE FEDERAL IMMIGRATION LAW and register them in class instead of contacting ICE as I believe FEDERAL IMMIGRATION LAW requires. Or Scenario the second, a person who is illegally in the United States and who is immersed in a culture of illegal immigrants which is rife with providers of forged documents will merely register as a state resident

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