If passed, Senate Bill 458 would bar illegal immigrants from attending approximately 35 universities and 25 technical colleges in the state of Georgia. Senator Barry Loudermilk, who sponsored SB 458 stated, “Our colleges and universities are for those that are U.S. citizens and are here legally.”
Currently, the federal law regarding illegal immigrants attending college states that admittance is at the states’ discretion. University System Chancellor Hank Huckaby argued that the Georgia University System is in compliance with federal law because they charge illegal immigrants out of state tuition rates. Huckaby is opposed to changes in the immigration law regarding illegal immigrants.
The new law would only affect colleges and universities that have rejected students who were academically qualified. The idea behind these changes is that if illegal immigrants are blocked from attending colleges and universitie, then there will be more room for qualified applicants who are either citizens are here legally. Huckaby argues that there are only about 300 illegal immigrants in the entire university system, and he does not see this as a huge problem.
The debate over laws regarding illegal immigrants attending colleges and universities is a heated one. There are strong opinions on both sides of the issues and many states are divided. Approximately 12 states have allowed illegal immigrants to attend their colleges and universities at the in-state tuition rate. 2 states have completely blocked illegal immigrants from attending public colleges and universities.
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