Immigrant Students Improve Education | Macaulay Honors College

09/06/2017

College News, Dean News

Macaulay Dean Mary C. Pearl joined New York Mayor Bill DeBlasio and other concerned New Yorkers on the steps of City Hall to #DefendDACA. The Facebook Live event was a response Tuesday’s announcement that the Trump administration is ending the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. 

Dean Pearl had this to say about Macaulay’s commitment to its immigrant students:

American liberal arts colleges are admired globally for producing graduates with skills in critical thinking and a drive for innovation. Increasingly, this optimal college culture is driven by immigrant students, but the decision to rescind DACA profoundly threatens this culture.

At Macaulay Honors College, the majority of our students are immigrants or children of immigrants. Many of them are Dreamers. Every day, we see direct evidence of how immigrant students improve our community of scholars with their strong work ethic, drive to succeed, desire to give back, and gratitude for their education.

Recent research on immigrant students is revealing: while they are more likely to report higher instances of family responsibilities as an obstacle to their academic success, first-generation immigrant children still do better in school. This result is all the more remarkable given that immigrant college students disproportionately come from low socioeconomic backgrounds.

The Macaulay community remains deeply committed to supporting our DACA students. As CUNY Chancellor James B. Milliken notes, “They represent some of the most talented and creative voices in the CUNY community and our city. We will do everything we can to help persuade Congress to shore up support for the DACA community, not undermine it.”

While we advocate with legislators, Macaulay Honors College and CUNY will continue to provide counseling and guidance for our DACA students and their families. Please check our DACA Resources page for more information. I assure you that we will do everything in our power to support our students–and our community.

These students aren’t just Dreamers, they are standout Achievers whose drive, determination, intelligence, and compassion will help America realize its highest ideals and aspirations—but only if they are allowed to stay in our country.


Mary C. Pearl
Dean