News Article

Joint Statement from Oregon Higher Education Leaders on DACA

September 6, 2017

Joint Statement from Oregon Higher Education Leaders on DACA
Salem, Oregon  | The Higher Education Coordinating Commission (HECC), Oregon’s seven public universities and OHSU represented by the Oregon Council of Presidents, 17 community colleges represented by the Oregon Community College Association, and 18 private nonprofit institutions represented by the Oregon Alliance of Independent Colleges and Universities issue the following statement after yesterday's announcement terminating the federal Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program:

“As a higher education community, we stand together to reaffirm our profound commitments to equity and access. We are deeply concerned by the Trump Administration's decision to discontinue the Deferred Action Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program in six months, and its impact on our students. We attest to the tremendous contributions of current Oregon DACA college students―and the potential of future students―to our campuses, communities and our state.
These students represent a shining promise for Oregon’s future. They are particularly resilient and driven to realize their highest potentials through Oregon higher education. They were brought to America as children, and for many, Oregon is the only home they have ever known. In Oregon communities, DACA students are neighbors and family members. Many have overcome incredible obstacles to pursue their certificates and degrees, and they are on track for success. They are building trajectories to satisfying, family-wage careers, and are working to gain economic mobility that will not only support their families' futures but contribute to Oregon’s economy and communities. Ending DACA, and putting a halt to the positive education and career trajectories these students are on, is not what Oregon needs. 
For years we have been working on transforming our education system to support success for all, with a focus on improving the educational attainment rates of students who are presently underserved. Oregon’s fastest-growing youth population has been its Hispanic/Latino/a population. In order to progress collectively as a state, we need to focus on the success of all our communities. Through tuition equity, state financial aid opportunities, and more, Oregon is one of the nation’s leading states in championing equity and success in higher education. We are deeply committed to continuing this legacy.
We support Governor Kate Brown’s statement urging Congress to work together on a thoughtful solution for these students. We remain committed to every legal action possible to protect and expand college access for all.”
Sent on behalf of:

  • Oregon Higher Education Coordinating Commission
  • Oregon Community College Association, representing: Blue Mountain Community College (CC), Central Oregon CC Chemeketa CC, Clackamas CC, Clatsop CC, Columbia Gorge CC, Klamath CC, Lane CC, Linn-Benton CC, Mt. Hood CC, Oregon Coast CC, Portland CC, Rogue CC, Southwestern Oregon CC, Tillamook Bay CC,  Treasure Valley CC, Umpqua CC
  • Oregon Council of Presidents, representing: Eastern Oregon University, Oregon Health & Science University, Oregon Institute of Technology, Oregon State University, Portland State University, Southern Oregon University, University of Oregon, Western Oregon University. Also see the statement on DACA by the Council of Presidents and links to statements from individual Presidents and campuses here. 
  • Oregon Alliance of Independent Colleges and Universities, representing: Concordia University, Corban University, George Fox University, Lewis and Clark College, Linfield College, Marylhurst University, Multnomah University, National College of Natural Medicine, Northwest Christian University, Oregon College of Art & Craft, Pacific Northwest College of Art, Pacific University, Reed College, University of Portland, University of Western States, Warner Pacific College, Western Seminary, Willamette University
Sources and contacts:
  • Oregon Higher Education Coordinating Commission: Ben Cannon, Executive Director; Endi Hartigan, Communications Director | | 971-701-4032 
  • Oregon Community College Association: Andrea Henderson, Executive Director | | 503-399-9912
  • Oregon Council of Presidents: Dana Richardson, Executive Director | | 503-838-9295
  • Oregon Alliance of Independent Colleges and Universities: Kristen Grainger, President | | 503-931-3702
The HECC is dedicated to fostering and sustaining the best, most rewarding pathways to opportunity and success for all Oregonians through an accessible, affordable and coordinated network for educational achievement beyond high school. For more information, go to