Responding to Trump administration's termination of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, Huron University College is introducing a $60,000 scholarship to affected American students.
Established by the Obama administration in 2012, the DACA program allows illegal immigrants who entered the United States as minors to receive renewable two-year work permits and avoid deportation. As of 2017, approximately 800 thousand youths are enrolled in the program.
“I think a number of people in higher education have become concerned,” said Huron Principal Barry Craig, referencing American educators' reactions to the decision. "A lot of American university presidents have condemned that decision because it affects mostly young people.”
Currently, many students under DACA protection have been legally entitled to enroll in post-secondary education in the United States, only to find out that they will be facing deportation this Tuesday.
“Rather than just making a statement, I thought ‘What could we do concretely?’” Craig said. “So that’s when we came up with the idea for offering the scholarship opportunity."
Funded internally, Huron announced on Wednesday that they will be offering a scholarship worth $50,000 for a four-year degree program per student. Since then, they have increased the amount to $60,000. Craig stated that he is hoping the scholarship will be awarded to multiple recipients.
Eligible students must be registered under the DACA program and meet Huron and Western University's admission requirements.
Huron has sent the release to multiple American media outlets and is working with a consultant in Washington, D.C., to advertise the scholarship to Americans. According to Craig, Huron has already been receiving calls from interested students.
“It’s not just us,” said Craig. “I think you’ll see other Canadian universities take a stand and make a statement.”