On Feb. 1, universities across the nation designated the day as National Dreamer Call-In Day.
The day expressed solidarity with college students who might be affected by the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA).
Seton Hall was on a list of participating schools including Fordham University, Kean University, Duke University and others.
Students were able to visit the Student Government Association (SGA) office on Thursday and make a call to their state senator to voice why they believe it is important to pass the DREAM Act. The DREAM Act proposes conditional and eventual citizenship for children of undocumented immigrants.
Dominic Thompson, a freshman diplomacy major, shared in an email why he participated in the day’s initiative.
“I have met so many people who come from all walks of life,” Thompson said. “Your race, nationality, or socio-economic background does not define whether you are more or less American. If you work hard, pay your taxes, and complete your civic duties, you shouldn’t have to worry about being forced out of your country and home.”
Dean Karen Van Norman, the SGA advisor, expressed in an email how proud she was for student involvement in this national movement.
“The failure of Congress to act to support the millions who benefit from the DACA program continues puts their future in jeopardy,” Van Norman said. “It’s important for our elected representatives to hear from our students on many issues, but certainly one as important this.”
Dr. Mary Meehan, interim president, also expressed the importance of defending students who will benefit from the passing of the DREAM Act.
“We are a country of immigrants and we have an obligation — especially to those who know no other home than our country, regardless of their birthplace,” Meehan said.
Meehan also explained that as a Roman Catholic university, the community must look up to influential leaders such as Pope Francis.
“Pope Francis reminds us every day of our obligation, not simply as Catholics, but as human beings,” Meehan said. “Two of his first trips after becoming Pope were to two islands of immigrants – Lampedusa and Lesbos. He returned to Rome with a dozen refugees and still ensures they are safe in Rome. He is our leader, and as a Catholic university we strive to follow his example of mercy and compassion to all of our brothers and sisters.”
Hannah Sakha can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.