Cal Poly does not currently have a protocol to provide jobs for students who do not have a social security number, according to Dream Center coordinator Kathrine Zevallos Pastor. But the Associated Students, Inc. (ASI) Board of Directors unanimously passed a resolution urging Cal Poly to change that.
The board resolution urges Cal Poly to work with undocumented students, UndocuAlly Working Group and the Dream Center to explore alternate forms of financial compensation for students with existing funding.
Pastor said although some students qualified for Deferred Action for Childhood Referral (DACA) and are provided a social security number, many students do not qualify for DACA and are unable to work.
Pastor said approximately 98,000 undocumented students are going to graduate from high school this year without DACA in the U.S.
The ASI resolution suggests the university provide payment to undocumented students in the form of stipends for all university jobs, including research opportunities, teacher assistant positions, graduate assistant positions, note-taking positions and student grader positions. The resolution only promotes compensation for Cal Poly jobs and is not a scholarship proposal.
“It’ll be a great important impact on their lives as students in regards to their financial abilities to support themselves,” Pastor said. “For them, a lot of them, they leave their homes, their families, to come to the realization that their financial package does not cover everything.”
Resolution author and ASI Board of Director Alan Faz said opportunities for undocumented students can be completely transformed in the form of scholarships and stipends.
“It’s something I’ve been working towards for a long time,” Faz said. “To continue to look for ways that we can help these students.”
Pastor said Cal Poly’s support of undocumented students is very new.
“It’s time for Cal Poly to do something,” Pastor said.
Pastor said she believes this resolution could decrease stress and fear often experienced by undocumented students on campus.
“This will help them to not feel like they have to live in the shadows,” Pastor said.
The resolution will been sent to University President Jeffrey Armstrong, Provost Kathleen Enz-Finken, Senior Vice President for Student Affairs, Keith Humphrey, Vice President of Research and Economic Development Renee A. Reijo Pera, Dean of Students Kathleen McMahon, Assistant Dean of Students Bryan Hubain, Dream Center and the UndocuAlly Working Group.
ASI Board of Directors cannot themselves enforce stipends as a form of compensation for undocumented students. The resolution only suggests that Cal Poly do so.
Correction: A previous version of this article stated Cal Poly Pomona had a program similar to the resolution in place.