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Correspondence sent to Colorado's Congressional delegation as Colorado Higher Ed Leaders Call for Support of Dreamers

July 26, 2021

Dear Colorado United States Senators and Representatives,

Fifteen months ago, leaders from institutions of higher education across Colorado wrote to you asking you to support DACA recipients and Dreamers as the Supreme Court was preparing to decide their future.

Since the Dream Act was first introduced in 2001, Dreamers have waited 20 years for a legislative solution that provides the confidence needed for them to invest in a stable, productive life in the United States. The most fortunate of Dreamers – those eligible to successfully apply for and renew DACA protections – have been forced to live life on two-year cycles, living in fear and uncertainty in the country they’ve lived in since they were children.

As higher education leaders, it is our responsibility to invest in the success of our students, regardless of immigration status, and we urge you to enact permanent legislative protection for Dreamers. There are an estimated 427,000 undocumented immigrants enrolled in U.S. colleges and universities, striving for the American dream while navigating the barriers inherent in their legal status. There are approximately 15,000 DACA recipients and many more Dreamers in Colorado. They work and study at our institutions, start businesses, pay taxes, care for families and contribute to our communities.

We respectfully ask that you, Members of Congress representing Colorado, draft and approve legislation that would provide permanent protection for Dreamers without hurting or penalizing other immigrant communities.

We appreciate your efforts in representing our state and those who live here, including Dreamers. We sincerely hope you will continue to support these Coloradans as they pursue the American dream in our state.

Sincerely,

Janine Davidson, President, Metropolitan State University of Denver
Angie Paccione, Executive Director, Colorado Department of Higher Education
Cheryl D. Lovell, President, Adams State University
Leah Bornstein, President, Aims Community College
Colleen Walker, CEO, Auraria Higher Education Center
L. Song Richardson, President, Colorado College
Joe Garcia, Chancellor, Colorado Community College System
John Marshall, President, Colorado Mesa University
Carrie Besnette Hauser, President and CEO, Colorado Mountain College
Paul C. Johnson, President, Colorado School of Mines
Tony Frank, Chancellor, Colorado State University System
Randy Johnson, Executive Director, Emily Griffith Technical College
Tom Stritikus, President, Fort Lewis College
Charles G. Lief, President, Naropa University
Allen Golden, Director, Technical College of the Rockies
Todd Saliman, President, University of Colorado
Donald M. Elliman Jr., Chancellor, University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus
Philip P. DiStefano, Chancellor, University of Colorado Boulder
Venkat Reddy, Chancellor, University of Colorado Colorado Springs
Michelle Marks, Chancellor, University of Colorado Denver
Jeremy Haefner, Chancellor, University of Denver
Andy Feinstein, President, University of Northern Colorado
Nancy Chisholm, President, Western Colorado University

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