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Statement of Steven Bahls, President of Augustana College, in Support of DACA

The Trump administration announced today that within six months it will rescind Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), created through executive order by President Obama in 2012. Congress now has the opportunity to act legislatively to protect the lives and futures of 800,000 Dreamers.

Last November I joined a list of nearly 650 college and university presidents who expressed their support of DACA, and my stance is unwavering. Higher education provides one of the best ways to become a contributing member of our society. Augustana College values and supports every single member of our diverse campus community, today and in the future.

Founded by Swedish immigrants, Augustana College is no longer an institution whose primary mission is to educate Swedish immigrants. Our campus community welcomes all who want to be educated for leadership and service in our diverse and changing world. Augustana College embraces the hopes and dreams of all our students, and honors the gifts and talents they bring to our college and to the world.

Therefore I urge Congress to act expeditiously to protect the Dreamers who are working not only to improve themselves, but also improve America’s capacity to embrace diversity and inclusion for the benefit of us all.