Five University of Georgia professors have started a program called Freedom University that will be open to undocumented students who are unable to attend public universities due to a new anti-immigrant policy.
Responding to concerns from the public that colleges in Georgia “were being overrun by illegal immigrants….and legal residents were being displaced,” the university system’s Board of Regents implemented a policy that will keep undocumented students from attending public schools, including some of the state’s best, such as the University of Georgia and Georgia State University.
This is not a justifiable argument. According to Marie Diamond’s article, “Georgia Professors Offer Courses To Undocumented Students Barred From Public Universities,” on Thinkpress.org, a study conducted by the Board of Regents showed “less than one percent of the state’s public college students were illegal immigrants and that undocumented students who pay out-of-state tuition more than pay for their education.”
Although they may not have citizenship, I don’t think that means that they should not receive an education. They are contributing just as much, if not more, as the people who are citizens of this country.
It was a very courageous act of these teachers to start this program for these students. Although the rigorous program will only be once a week, it still provides some resistance to the policy and is making a big difference in these students’ lives. The information taught in the course will be similar to what is being taught at the schools that the students have been prevented from attending.
What makes it even better is that the teachers are trying to seek accreditation so that the credits the students acquire will be transferable in the future if they go on to other universities.
I believe this is just the beginning of a large array of programs to help these students achieve what any person striving for an education wants.
Even though the students won’t be barred from attending all public schools, the fact that they will not be able to go to five of Georgia’s top colleges and universities is something that needs to be changed quickly. They should have just as much of a chance to attend a top college as anyone else.