The State University of New York system is currently pressing for financial equality for both documented and undocumented American citizens through support for the Education Equity for DREAMers Act (Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors).
The act would result in financial support for undocumented immigrant minors in America who wish to pursue higher education in New York.
This would allow any immigrant child brought to the United States before the age of 16 to either receive financial aid in order to attend college or join the military, and both opportunities would be eligible to bring said child closer to citizenship.
As of now, immigrant students are denied the right to receive financial aid through the most common means of aid: student loans, awards and Tuition Assistance Programs (TAP).
"In the most basic form, humans are equal no matter what part of the world they're in," said sophomore Tasmia Naz, adding that legalized documentation should not control academic opportunities.
Sophomore Tyler DeRubio referenced opinions of immigration through multiple generations, stating, "Every new group of immigrants is hated against."
There could be benefits to immigration, whether legal or illegal. According to research done by professor Giovanni Peri at the University of California Davis, immigration has led to higher wages for 90 percent of workers who were native-born Americans.
Opinions among politicians vary on this topic. As of now, President Obama supports the DREAM act, while many of the Republican presidential candidates have expressed a stance against it. Rep. Ron Paul has stated that although he's against the act, he doesn't believe illegal immigrants should be deported.
According to CBS News, Paul said that hispanics are being used as a scapegoat, but in reality they're only a symptom of a greater problem: the welfare state.
According to The New York Times, former Gov. Mitt Romney has stated that, if the DREAM act came across his desk, he would veto it and promote "self-deportation."
Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich said he was for "half the DREAM act," specifically the half that grants citizenship to anyone who enlists in the United States Army.