Pima Community College hosted an immigration forum Thursday, where lawyers and an undocumented student talked about the ongoing immigration reform debate, in particular, the options for recipients of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals.
Jessica Garcia, 22, is one of 27,000 people in Arizona who have received the two-year work permit.
President Barrack Obama signed an executive order in the summer of 2012 allowing those between the ages of 16 and 31 who were brought to the U.S. as children, are undocumented, and fit a series of other requirements, file for deferred action.
Pima Community College and Maricopa Community Colleges accept the deferred action permit as proof of residency for Arizona students and offers in-state tuition.
“We worked hard to get the Pima board to allow that,” Garcia said. “Then we went to the Arizona Board of Regents, but their hands are tied…we are going to untie them.”
She is outreach director for Scholarship A-Z, an organization that helps undocumented students find scholarships for higher education, and “that is trying to find a way for (the regents) to be able to support us.”