KINGSTON, R.I. – September 5, 2017 – Since the start of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program in 2012, the University of Rhode Island has welcomed talented, motivated and bright students to join our community in the quest for knowledge. As president of the University of Rhode Island, I joined more than 600 college and university leaders across the country last November to sign a letter of support for DACA.
URI supports the benefits of the DACA program and is deeply disappointed in today’s announcement to rescind DACA. We support our congressional leadership’s efforts to codify DACA protections into law. URI will continue to ensure all students at URI are supported. Their safety and security are central to their experiences here on our campuses. In the days ahead, we will evaluate the potential effects on our students, faculty and staff and their families and will do everything within our authority to support their educational success.
One of the University’s four transformational goals is to build a community that values and embraces equity and diversity. If our graduates are to succeed and lead in the 21st century world, with its wide diversity of cultures, lifestyles, beliefs, religions, political systems, and philosophies, we must help them develop the ability to communicate, understand, and engage productively with people very different from themselves. The most influential university will be the one that is unified in its acknowledgment and valuing of these differences as essential to a more enriched community and a more relevant education.