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All Posts for LPI Community Experts Blog

‘Be Bold. It’s economics.’

November 21st, 2014 by Anonymous

What if I told you that a single policy initiative could enrich our communities, inject a catalyst into our economy, strengthen our families, and secure our border all the while bringing *in* money for the federal government? (http://nyti.ms/N7Mk4c)

You might call me crazy.

But such a plan exists. It was the comprehensive immigration bill that passed the U.S. Senate with 68 votes last summer. A bill that has languished in the House for the last 500+ days.

Such is what gave rise to the executive actions announced by President Obama last night. The three major steps he will take to address our broken immigration system are: (1) invest in border patrol (2) facilitate student/worker/entrepreneur visas, and (3) deprioritize the deportations of parents who have been here more than five years, pursuant to a criminal background check & back taxes. These proposals will lift the threat of deportation from an estimated five million mothers & fathers and long standing members of our communities.

Advocates find victory with policy change

February 6th, 2014 by mcorina

Providence, R.I. - Like legends, their names are ubiquitous. Talk to anyone about Rhode Island’s in-state tuition policy for undocumented students and it’s doubtless they’ll pop up in the conversation. In Italy, all roads might lead to Rome, but in Rhode Island, all roads lead to Michelle DePlante and Roberto Gonzalez, the all-star advocates for Rhode Island immigrants.

Both worked with the Coalition of Advocates for Student Opportunities (CASO) to promote the policy change that allows undocumented students to pay the in-state tuition price at public universities. DePlante says the process was “pretty contentious and long,” while Gonzalez opines it was “very frustrating.”

Recruiting Latino Students Through In-state Tuition

January 7th, 2014 by mcorina

Providence, R.I. __ Let’s role play: you’re an administrator at a Rhode Island state college. A local student applies and wants to pay the in-state tuition price. The student isn’t eligible for financial aid and will pay out of pocket for her education. She’s an overachiever, stacked with awards and accomplishments and all sorts of testaments to her intellect. The catch (because there is always one) is that she’s undocumented. Would you send her (and her money) out the door?  

If this were 2010, you’d have to say ‘Bye’ to your potential star student (and her money). Since the passage of the in-state tuition policy by the RI Board of Governors in 2011, however, Rhode Island’s public institutions (i.e. Rhode Island College, University of Rhode Island and Community College of Rhode Island) have been able to indulge undocumented students who want to spend their hard-earned bucks on an education in Rhode Island.

“Every student who wants to participate is able to,” says CCRI Associate Director of Admissions Rob Giovino, “We spend a lot of time tracking this.”

High School Staff in RI Works with and for Students

December 6th, 2013 by tagonia

PROVIDENCE, R.I. __ A beloved motif in sitcoms and cartoons is the bumbling high school faculty. Teachers, principals and guidance counselors are portrayed as incompetent fools who can hardly help themselves, much less their students. But in Rhode Island, this image is itself divorced from reality. The Ocean State’s high schools are on the offense, helping undocumented students navigate the thorny process of applying to college.

Kyleen Carpenter, Head of Blackstone Academy Charter School in PawtucketKyleen Carpenter, Head of Blackstone Academy Charter School in Pawtucket“We get so much information. We’re feeding it to the students and their families,” says Kyleen Carpenter, Head of Blackstone Academy Charter School in Pawtucket. Since the passage of the in-state tuition policy for undocumented students in 2011, Rhode Island high schools have bombarded undocumented students with information, making clear their education doesn’t have to end after high school.