Event Recap

BHCC Brings Issues of DACA, TPS and Undocumented Students to the Table

Friday, March 23, 2018

On March 16, 2018, Bunker Hill Community College (BHCC) hosted nearly 100 educators, guidance counselors and community-based service personnel to discuss academic advising, trauma-sensitive education and legal issues for students with Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), Temporary Protected Status (TPS) and Undocumented immigration status.

BHCC’s Undocumented Student Working Group led by Colleen Yee, a Success Coach and Academic Advisor, along with Austin Gilliland, Interim Assistant Academic Dean of Academic Affairs, coordinated the gathering and welcomed the participants for the day-long event. Surrounding the tables and chairs were posters with quotes of students who fall into these immigration categories. The quotes were taken from interviews where students shared their concerns and thoughts about their statuses.

Keynote speaker Jonathan Miller, Chief of the Public Protection Advocacy Bureau for the Massachusetts Office of the Attorney General defined the differences between each status as well as new guidelines to be proposed by the state and federal governments. “These are challenging times,” Miller said. “In times of crisis comes opportunity. I think the opportunity is to work collaboratively to improve our communication and strategies so that we are there for our students and our communities when they really need us.”

Following the presentation, breakout sessions focused on key issues affecting protected and undocumented students including academic advising, the effects of stress and trauma on learning, legal issues and building institutional support.