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Askwith Essentials: Assessing the DREAM

This Tuesday, October 25, Assistant Professor Roberto Gonzales will lead a panel discussion in commemoration of the 15th anniversary of the introduction of the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act. The panel, featuring national leaders in the immigration reform movement, will outline what has happened in the wake of the bill’s failure, and the costs to our country and local communities.

Recent Immigration in America

  • In 2014, there were 11.1 million undocumented immigrants in the United States, down from 12.2 million in 2005.
  • About 60 percent of America’s undocumented immigrants live in six states – California, Texas, Florida, New York, Illinois, and New Jersey.
  • Two thirds of undocumented immigrants have lived in the United States for at least 10 years.

The DREAM Act

  • The bill aimed to give permanent green cards for undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. before the age of 16 and have lived in the country for at least 5 years.
  • To be considered for “permanent” status, applicants must have earned a high school diploma or GED, attended at least two years of college, or served in the military.
  • It has been introduced in Congress, but never ratified, a dozen times since 2001, coming closest to passing when it fell during a Senate filibuster in 2007.
  • Opponents feared the law would decrease access to college for ‘regular citizens’ and open the floodgates for more immigration.
  • Supporters claimed that college access would not be restricted, that the bill was designed to limit the number of beneficiaries, and that legal status would boost the economy and bring in extra tax revenue.

Speakers:

  • Julieta Garibay, campaigns director and co-founder, United We Dream
  • Donald E. Graham, co-founder, TheDream.US; chairman of the board, Graham Holdings Company; founding chairman, District of Columbia College Access Program
  • Angela Maria Kelley, executive director, Center for American Progress Action Fund; senior vice president, Center for American Progress
  • Jose Antonio Vargas, founder and editor, #EmergingUS; founder and chief executive officer, Define American

Discussant:

Event details:

Tuesday, October 25, 5:30pm

Askwith Hall, Longfellow Hall
13 Appian Way
Cambridge, MA, 02138

NOTE: Seating is first-come, first-seated.