• April 21, 2014

States Take Varying Approaches to Immigration and Higher Education

The lack of clear federal guidance on how states and public colleges should treat undocumented immigrants in higher education has led to different polices on admission, tuition, and state student aid.


1. peregrino - July 26, 2010 at 09:00 am

Interesting that SC and Alabama haven't gotten that whole 14th Amendment concept yet.

I thought in-state tuition was designed to differentiate between those who have been supporting the system by paying taxes and those from other states who have not. If a student is a resident of the state, discriminating on the basis of documentation is discrimination, pure and simple.

2. physicsprof - July 27, 2010 at 07:46 am

#2, I thought that the concept of paying taxes included submitting tax forms on or before Apr 15 for the purpose of verification that a fair share of taxes has been paid. Something tells me that people you feel are discriminated about in SC and AL rarely do this.

3. pigpen892 - July 27, 2010 at 09:20 am

@physicsprof, "something tells me" that you assume undocumented immigrants rarely pay taxes. I was privileged to work side-by-side with a number of undocumented immigrants for a number of years and they all paid taxes, municipal, state, and federal. I'm confident that some undocumented immigrants don't pay taxes just as I'm sure that some documented citizens don't pay taxes either.

4. ichrysso - July 27, 2010 at 09:48 am

I would bet that the number of undocumented workers not paying taxes would exceed the number of documented workers not paying taxes. And really, if someone is breaking the law by being here illegally, is it much of a stretch to think that many do not pay taxes either?

Regarding the first comment, this really has nothing to do with paying into the system. Many traditional age students have not had the opportunity to pay into the system with payroll taxes, so this argument is moot. What we should be concerned with is fairness to those who are here legal residents and the pool of subsidy which is available (and is limited). We also need to be wary of rewarding the bad behavior of being here illegally because it simply encourages more people to cross the borders.

5. goldenrae9 - July 27, 2010 at 03:47 pm

#4. The whole idea of "rewarding behavior" is ludicrious. For example, as a former high school ESL teacher I worked with many students who were brought over by their parents in their primary years without consent and have been brought up in the US education system. Thus do we punish the child for the parent's role in their immigration?

Non-violent lawbreakers abound in society. Jaywalkers, running the speedlimit. There are students with juvenile and adult records in our higher education system. I don't comprehend the difference.

6. your_rights - July 27, 2010 at 04:24 pm

"(CNN) -- Eight severed heads were found Tuesday in Durango, a city in central Mexico, the state attorney general's office said.
The heads were found in four locations in the city, which is the seat of the state by the same name.
The remains have not been identified and the bodies have not been found, the prosecutors said." [July 27, 2010]

Don't punish the children? Aren't there several cliches about that?:
i.e. the apple doesn't fall far from the tree
the sins of the father, etc.
There are plenty of good quality higher education institutions in Mexico, Iran, Iraq, etc.

7. alvitap - July 28, 2010 at 06:44 am

Any one who thinks that so-called undocumented immigrants don't pay taxes is seriously naive. EVERYONE IN THE US pays taxes.
Through rents, fuel, food, entertainment, clothes, social security (when employers don't pocket it). Again, everyone pays taxes if they live and work in the U.S.
Moreover, so-called illegal aliens produce less crime than Americans. It is silly to argue otherwise.

In fact, "illegal aliens" pay their share of taxes and receive little in return. (about 20% is forfeited because they don't get it back). In other words, they subsidize the lifestyles of americano settlements. Americans are welfare recipients off the slave labor of border crossers. Don't you get it? Americans (you and your grandparents) have been stealing, killing, and raping natives for hundreds of years under the guise of bringing civilization. You know it's true. Americans are no different than apartheid Afrikaners.

8. ichrysso - July 28, 2010 at 04:35 pm

Re: 7

You said "Any one who thinks that so-called undocumented immigrants don't pay taxes is seriously naive. EVERYONE IN THE US pays taxes." First, please do not confuse people by using the word "immigrant." An immigrant is here legally, by definition, and your skewing language is an attempt to confuse matters, While your statement that "EVERYONE IN THE US pays taxes" is true, they likely do not pay THEIR SHARE of taxes, which includes income tax. Sure, they pay rent and fuel taxes like the rest of us, but to think that the day laborer who collects $15/hour cash under the table is sending the IRS a 1099 each year so that he or she can give 1/3 to the government is ludicrous. I am sure that there are some who do, but the VAST majority DO NOT.

"Moreover, so-called illegal aliens produce less crime than Americans. It is silly to argue otherwise." It is a crime to be in this country illegally, so therefore 100% of illegal aliens are criminals.

"You know it's true. Americans are no different than apartheid Afrikaners." Well, it's obvious that with this statement, we went from disciplined, rational debate to pound-the-chest, emotional bursts of nonsense. Please draw out the comparisons (AND differences) between America and Apartheid South Africa and I will retract this statement.

9. ichrysso - July 28, 2010 at 04:51 pm

#5 If we had a government which was actually effective at keeping illegal aliens out, then we would not have to worry about their children being in the schools and diluting the school experience for legal U.S. residents. And if the government actually enforced the laws, there would be no need for state laws like they passed in Arizona.

10. alvitap - July 29, 2010 at 08:43 am

Dear 8 and 9,

You have no idea what you are talking about regarding the amount of taxes that border crossers pay. Twenty percent tax forfeited to the various jurisdictions in the U.S. is a conservative amount. You know what conservative means don't you? Apologists of the the American way of life can't see the forest for the trees. The workers that your ilk call illegal aliens are the true chest pounders. We will decide what is rational discourse, not you. We are not your slaves and one day your sorry argument will be translucent to everyone, well, maybe not to you.
The U.S. government knows quite well what it is doing. It is allowing desperate workers to serve your needs. Just like it always has. It is not a crime if the U.S. government says it is OK to cross the border. You are the one that is naive.
This is what is so sinister about the immigration issue. The U.S. knows that it needs McDonaldized labor to keep the Titanic afloat. Mexican border crossers aren't sinking the ship, capitalists are sinking your ship. Why don't you rale against workers on the global labor force, rale against the Waltons and Gates, et al, who have abandoned American workers for 40 years. Rale against all the suck-up companies that have followed them there. You should be kissing the behinds of low-wage workers who come here to make your greasy burgers. They are the ones keeping the last vestiges of small enterprise going. Are you going to make the beds, make your enchirritos, pick the melons? I don't think so.

Again: Border crossers pay MORE than their share of taxess.
Border crossers aren't illegal, you are.
Settlers have no right to native land.

Study this for the test.

11. alvitap - July 29, 2010 at 08:54 am

NO. 8

The U.S. and South Africa are slave states. Only, ... the South Africans threw off their racist invaders didn't they?
Better learn to speak an additional language Ese.

The Nazis were dispasionate. Learn German.

12. truthplease - July 31, 2010 at 01:56 pm

Quit trying to frame the debate, that is so pathetic. Oh, don't worry, they are "undocumented workers". Now this fallacy normally falls under two reasons:

1. They are just people
2. They just want a better life

Let's apply this logic to illegal drug dealers.

Illegal drug dealers are "undocumented pharmacists", and should be rewarded because they fit both requirements! "undocumented pharmacists" are (1) people and (2) just want a better life. Therefore, we should quit arresting "undocumented pharmacists", and instead, reward them!

What a great idea!

13. truthplease - July 31, 2010 at 02:03 pm

Alvita, there is not one single job where immigrants make up more than half the labor force. Illegals drive the wages down of uneducated Americans, which is majority blacks and latinos (according to CNN article on high school drop out rate). I am advocating enforcing laws to help uneducated Americans of all colors. You are advocating a broken system that lowers the standard of living for immigrants and americans. Obviously you're a socialist, since you blame capitalism. Despite the fact capitalism has resilted on the highest standard of living in humab history, while socialism has resulted in the slaughter of millions of people by their own governments in peace time. Reality check to the socialist ideologue please.

14. 22168503 - August 17, 2010 at 09:06 am

This "debate" belongs on Foxnews, Drudge or even CNN.com. So pathetic it is occuring here at CHE.

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