Washington, DC – Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) President Peter McPherson today released the following statement regarding immigration proposals being debated in the House of Representatives.
“APLU appreciates members of Congress who are seeking real solutions that address the untenable situation of Dreamers and fix flaws in our nation’s employment-based immigration system. Public universities have long advocated for a legislative solution to help Dreamers who are currently in limbo. This is a moral imperative as we seek to help these young people who did no wrong in coming to the United States. It is also a matter of economic competitiveness for our nation as many of these young people attend our universities and go onto graduate and make positive contributions in the workforce.
“Rightfully so, the unacceptable humanitarian crisis at our nation’s southern border has captured the attention of the nation. While there is no direct link to higher education, immigration legislation must address and end the new, immoral practice of separating families.
“Our association also continues to strongly support expanding opportunities for qualified international students to receive green cards so that after earning their degrees, they can remain in the U.S. to work, build businesses, and strengthen our economy. It is long past time for our nation to move beyond flawed immigration policies that send talented international students back to economic competitors abroad instead of allowing them to remain here and contribute to our country.
“This country has always been a nation of immigrants. Our nation is enriched by the talents, contributions, and cultures of those from around the world who come to the United States in pursuit of a better life. Ultimately, immigration reform will require bipartisan answers. Neither of the two bills the House of Representatives may consider this week is the product of consensus between the two parties. Republicans and Democrats must work together, compromise, and find lasting solutions. APLU will continue to be an advocate and partner to improve immigration law and bolster the ability of our nation’s public universities to contribute to the public good.”