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Pima Community College promotes programs for DACA students

Posted at 9:23 PM, Aug 24, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-25 02:09:09-04

TUCSON, Ariz. — Pima Community College is selling it's image as a DACA-friendly institution to potential students.

"I could be like so many of you: born to parents in another country, coming to the us and not being recognized, so I'm very sensitive to that, Lee Lambert, Chancellor of Pima Community College.

Since May 2018, after an Arizona Supreme Court decision, daca students have been denied 'in-state' tuition to attend public universities.

"Someone in the DACA program or someone with no documentation, there's no barrier to enrolling at pima college the issue is the tuition," said Jeffrey Sylvin,

General Counsel for Pima Community College.

A spokesperson for Pima College told KGUN9 since then they have not had a mechanism for counting 'DACA' students, since they're no longer charged as 'in-state' student.

Part of Monday's webinar included 'DACA' students who received aid from PCC to pursue their higher-education.

"My immigration status didn't really affect me until my senior year of high school when I found out I did not qualify for financial aid," Lucero Barraza, former PCC student.

PCC promoted programs that help 'DACA' students and their families.

"One of the things that pima has offered to all students as July 1, 2019 is the 'Student Wellness Assistance Program,'" said Sylvia Loustaunau Romero, a counselor at PCC.

With the added burden of paying a higher fee for 'out-of-state' tuition, PCC made mention of it's programs that help lighten that fiscal load specifically for 'DACA' students.

"We have two scholarships that help our 'Dreamer' and 'DACA' students, one is called 'Dreamers and Beyond' and the other is called 'the Dream Fund,'" said Dolores Duran-Cerda, Provost at PCC.

'Scholarships A-Z' also weighed in on the informational webinar.

"We've been able to help almost 100 youth connected to our program with over 45-thousand dollars in funding for COVID response," Carolina Silva, Executive Director at 'Scholarships A-Z.'

Click here for information about aid programs for DACA students at PCC