The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Some University of Georgia faculty called a policy barring illegal immigrants from the state’s most selective public colleges “a step toward re-segregation,” and the University Council urged state leaders to rescind the ban Thursday.
UGA President Michael Adams said he will share the council’s resolution with the State Board of Regents, but he stressed the university will continue to follow the policy. The regents have stood by the rules when questioned.
The policy forbids illegal immigrants from attending any campus that has turned away academically qualified students the past two years. The rule went into effect this fall and applies to UGA, Georgia Tech, Georgia State University, Georgia Health Sciences University and Georgia College and State University.
The University Council is made up of faculty and administrators who advise Adams on policies concerning academics and other issues. The council’s vote was a symbolic stance by the state’s largest public university and follows an earlier resolution the student government passed urging the regents to reverse the policy.
The regents approved the ban after months of public debate over fears that illegal immigrant students take seats away from lawful residents. Illegal immigrants may attend the other 30 colleges in the University System of Georgia, provided they pay out-of-state tuition.
Lawmakers filed a bill last year to bar these students from all public colleges, but it didn’t pass either chamber of the Legislature.
Alabama and South Carolina bar illegal immigrants from attending public colleges. A dozen states grant them admission and in-state tuition if they are trying to earn legal status.