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Resources for DACA and Undocumented Students

A Message for Cornell's DACA and Undocumented Students

from Laura Spitz, Vice Provost for International Affairs

Cornell University values the contributions of all of its more than 32,000 students, faculty and staff, whatever their backgrounds, experiences, or homelands. A diverse and inclusive academic community shapes the very workings of a university, expands possibilities, and strengthens results.

There are many remarkable, innovative and passionate DACA and undocumented students engaged in study and research at Cornell. They enrich the fabric of our academic community and contribute to our standing as a leading global institution of higher education.

Their safety and success is paramount.

In response to the continuing changes in federal regulations that affect DACA and undocumented students in the United States, Cornell has joined with other American universities to advocate for their permanent protected status. We want to assure that DACA and undocumented students have the ability to continue their education in the United States and succeed in their plans, without facing the threat of deportation to home countries they barely know.

DACA and undocumented students are welcome and supported in the Cornell community.

Cornell University supports DACA and undocumented students—and provides resources and information to assist them.

Updates about the DACA Program

  • Frequently Asked Questions about the rescission of DACA, provided by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security

  • On November 10, 2017, a lawsuit over the planned rescission of the DACA immigration program was filed by Princeton University and Microsoft Corp. against the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

  • A Fact Sheet about the rescission of DACA, provided by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security

  • On September 5, 2017, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, acting on U.S. President Trump's decision, initiated the orderly wind down of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (DACA).

  • An August 28, 2017 opinion by Cornell Law Professor Stephen W. Yale-Loehr, on why Trump should not revoke DACA: PDF iconOpinion_DACA_082817_YaleLoehr.pdf

  • On June 15, 2017, the Trump administration announced that it would continue the Obama-era program intended to protect Dreamers from deportation and provide them work permits. A U.S. Department of Homeland Security fact sheet states that immigrants enrolled in the 2012 program, known as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, “will continue to be eligible” to renew every two years and notes that “no work permits will be terminated prior to their current expiration dates.” (Also see the FAQ.)
  • Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), a program in force since June 2012, provides temporary relief from deportation to individuals born after June 16, 1981 who have lived continuously in the United States since June 15, 2007. Individuals with DACA status (also known as “Dreamers”) can renew their status every two years. DACA is not a lawful status, but it confers important benefits, such as the ability to apply for temporary work permits and social security numbers.
  • On February 20, 2017, U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security John Kelly issued two implementation memos, fact sheets, and questions and answers to the Department of Homeland Security workforce, providing further direction for implementing the recent executive orders calling for increased border security and tighter enforcement of interior immigration laws.
  • On April 10, 2017, Cornell University senior leaders issued a Joint statement affirming support for DACA students. The statement summarizes Cornell’s commitments regarding financial aid, summer housing options, protection of privacy, and legal assistance for current and prospective DACA students.
  • U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services provides updates on official government policies related to immigration into the United States.

Support at Cornell

University Statements

 Guidance and Counseling

  • The staff in Cornell's Dean of Students office is available for support, advice, guidance, and consultation navigating various circumstances. Contact or +1 (607)-255-1115 to be connected with a resource.

  • Cornell's Office of Graduate Student Life serves the Cornell community in many capacities: discussing student concerns, providing available resources and services, and sharing options to handle difficult academic and personal situations. Contact Sara Xayarath Hernández, associate dean for inclusion and student engagement ( to help identify appropriate resources.

  • Cornell's Office of Academic Diversity Initiatives offers general advising on personal and academic support, as well as planning for future academic and professional aims and referrals specifically for undocumented students as part of the trailblazers program.

  • Cornell’s International Students and Scholars Office assists international students, academic staff, and their families by advising on U.S. federal immigration and other issues, and through web resources, information sessions, and events. They also provide counseling on personal, academic, and cultural matters. To speak with a staff member directly, email

  • Counseling and Psychological Services, or CAPS (including the Let’s Talk Program), a part of Cornell Health, is a confidential place to talk with a trained health-care professional about any concern. This may include stress, loneliness, anxiety, depression, adjustment challenges, relationship difficulties, questions about identity, managing an existing mental health condition, or other issues. Please call CAPS at +1 (607) 255-5155 to speak with a staff member directly.

  • Cornell's Faculty and Staff Assistance Program offers free and confidential guidance and support to benefits-eligible employees and their partners to address issues that may be affecting their personal lives and/or job satisfaction or performance. This confidential resource is part of Cornell's broad commitment to foster and support the mental health and well-being of the campus community.

Legal Assistance

Financial Assistance


Support from Off Campus

For more information, contact Laurie Damiani, Office of the Vice Provost for International Affairs: