A message about DACA from the Mount Mary President

You may be aware that President Trump recently announced an action to rescind protections provided through the DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) program. Through DACA, 800,000 young people, who were brought to the United States as children without legal immigrant status, have the opportunity to work, attend college, and participate as contributing members of their communities without the threat of deportation.

As an institution of higher education, sponsored by the School Sisters of Notre Dame and in the tradition of Catholic social teaching, we are committed to fostering a just community that welcomes, supports, and celebrates all of our students. As a learning community, we are dedicated to the success of all of our students, no matter their background or immigration status.

Last year, President Schwalbach, along with many other college presidents, signed two letters supporting DACA and the rights for college students with DACA status. Given our Mount Mary mission “to encourage leadership, integrity, and a deep sense of social justice arising from a sensitivity to moral values and Christian principles,” it is important that we stand in solidarity with our undocumented students who are impacted by changes announced by President Trump.

We have pulled together a variety of resources and programming that we hope will be helpful to you.

Mount Mary University Resources

Counseling Center – We recognize that this recent announcement may be overwhelming or stressful for many of our community members. We encourage you to take care of yourself! Mount Mary’s Counseling Center is available for walk-in or scheduled meetings with students on the following days/times; email mmu-counselingcenter@mtmary.edu for scheduling needs.

  • Monday, 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM
  • Tuesday, 8:00 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Wednesday, 8:00 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Thursday, 8:00 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Friday, 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM

Student Organization Fair – The International Club will provide information on support for DACA recipients and Milwaukee-area resources at the Student Organization Fair next Wednesday, September 13, from 11:30 AM – 1:00 PM, in the Alumnae Dining Room.


Milwaukee Community Legal Resources

There are too many fantastic Milwaukee-area community resources for us to list them all; these organizations have supported Mount Mary students in the past, and have Mount Mary alumnae working at them presently.

  • Catholic Charities of Milwaukee – Catholic Charities of Milwaukee provides legal services for immigrants. Contact 414-643-8570, extensions 4420 or 4415, or e-mail bcass@ccmke.org to set up an appointment.
  • Soberalski Immigration Law Firm – Soberalski Immigration is a full-service law firm, based in Milwaukee, that is dedicated to providing affordable and attentive immigration support to individuals and families. Soberalski is offering free consultations for the rest of September to new, former, and existing clients with DACA; call 414-533-5000 for further information.
  • Voces de la Frontera – Voces de la Frontera is a community organization that works to support civil and workers’ rights, and offers a free legal clinic every Saturday, from 9:00 – 11:00 AM, at 1027 S. 5th St. in Milwaukee, WI, 53204.
  • DACA Legal Clinic – Join legal experts at Alverno College on September 16, 8 AM – 12 PM, for this free event providing information on DACA, renewing DACA status, and other support.
  • Marquette University Legal Clinic – This volunteer legal clinic offers brief legal advice and referral services, and is staffed by volunteer law students working with and supervised by licensed attorneys.


Get Involved

  • Join a group of Mount Mary community members in writing a letter to Congress, in support of those affected by the recent DACA decision. If interested, come to the Media Room (Notre Dame Hall 146, first floor) on Monday, September 11, from 3 – 4 PM.
  • Write a letter (on your own) to our Wisconsin legislators asking them to address this issue in a timely way; you can find your legislators here. Feel free to write your own language, or use this suggested wording:

In light of the President’s decision to end DACA, I strongly urge you to pass the Dream Act of 2017 as soon as possible. This bipartisan bill would allow young people who came to the United States as children to regularize their status and thus pursue their educational and career goals. They have much to offer their communities and our country. Thank you.

  • Attend a panel on October 5, 12 – 1 PM, to educate yourself on DACA – immigration rights, various resources, campus support, and more. Watch for additional information soon!


Other Information

New DACA applications are no longer being accepted; those who currently have DACA are eligible to renew until March 5, 2018.

It is important to know your rights as a DACA recipient or in your support of family/friends:

 

As we consider the needs of our campus community, Milwaukee, and the country, I ask for your prayers for all who are impacted by this announcement and that our elected officials will make informed, just decisions. And for any of our Mount Mary Dreamers, know that we support you and are committed to your continued success.

Sincerely,

Dr. Christine Pharr