MIDDLEBURY, Vt. – The Association of Vermont Independent Colleges (AVIC) issued a statement signed by 17 Vermont college presidents expressing “deep concern over the current administration’s decision to terminate the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and the way it is being implemented.”

The statement, which was issued September 22, urges Congress to swiftly bring forth legislation to establish DACA permanently in law. The statement also affirms the college presidents’ support for Vermont joining 14 other states in a legal challenge to terminating DACA on the grounds that it would cause harm to hundreds of thousands of their residents, injure colleges and universities, damage companies and state economies, and disrupt the states’ statutory and regulatory interests.”

“We are proud to be members of a state that has long embraced and protected its immigrants,” the statement continues. “Our institutions all seek to enroll the best and most promising individuals regardless of their circumstances, and we have benefitted from the presence and contributions of DACA students. Vermont is a state that is proud of its independent spirit, strong sense of community, and sense of justice. We stand united with DACA students.”

The full text of the AVIC statement is available online.