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Cornell University

Undocumented/DACA Student Resources

BRIDGE Program

The Cornell BRIDGE (Building Relationships to Aid Growth and Empowerment) Program for Undocumented Students is designed for undergraduate undocumented students to form lifelong mentorships with graduate undocumented students to explore graduate school, career pathways, and other life milestones. The program encompasses professional development and community building programming. Newly launched in Spring 2022, this program is seeking undocumented, DACA, and formerly undocumented graduate/postdoc students at Cornell University. To learn more or to participate, contact Julia Dahae Jun, Graduate Assistant, Student Empowerment & Undocumented/DACA Student Support.
 

Afternoon Tea Dinner Series

Undocumented and DACA students come together at these private meals to create a community of support for each other. To learn more, contact Julia Dahae Jun, Graduate Assistant, Student Empowerment & Undocumented/DACA Student Support.

 

Student Organization

DREAM Team is a Cornell student organization that strives to provide a support network for undocumented students on campus. You can reach them via email: dreamteam@cornell.edu.
 

Academic Support

  • The 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.
  • The The Office of Global Learning 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 international@cornell.edu.
  • The 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.
     

Legal Assistance

Clinical faculty at Cornell Law School will provide—without charge—confidential legal assistance and/or referrals to undocumented Cornell students, including DACA students (https://www.lawschool.cornell.edu/academics/experiential-learning/clinical-program/1l-immigration-law-and-advocacy-clinic/). For assistance with undoc/DACA-related legal matters, contact Jaclyn Kelley-Widmer, associate clinical professor of law, Cornell Law School: jak533@cornell.edu or 607-255-9898.

For assistance with immigration legal issues other than DACA, such as an immigration court proceeding or criminal/immigration law matter, please email immigrationhelp@cornell.edu to reach the team of Cornell Law faculty working on immigration issues. If you are an international student or have questions about a student visa, please contact the Office of Global Learning.

In addition, the Legal Information Institute at Cornell Law School is a not-for-profit group that believes everyone should be able to read and understand the laws that govern them, without cost. They publish law online, and create materials that help people understand the law.

 

Emergency Funds for DACA Renewal

Cornell University offers funding for enrolled students (undergraduate, graduate and professional degree students) to renew their DACA.
 

Mental Health Resources

This mental health and wellness guide created by Informed Immigrant, includes tips for dealing with immigration-related stress as well as legal and psychological resources. 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. CAPS has counselors who are able to assist undocumented/DACAmented students. Please call CAPS at +1 (607) 255-5155 to speak with a staff member directly.

Cornell since its founding has been committed to diversity and inclusion, and DREAMers (undocumented students, with and without DACA status) are an integral part of our community. Cornell Health will continue to vigilantly protect the privacy of student health records from any unauthorized disclosure in accordance with the Health Information Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and university policy.

Find more mental health resources for the Cornell community here.

 

Sanctuary City and County Resolutions

“Cornell will continue to vigilantly protect the privacy of student information and records from any unauthorized or unlawful intrusion. While Cornell representatives, including the Cornell University Police Department (CUPD), will comply with lawfully issued subpoenas and warrants, it is neither the University’s practice nor expectation to function as an agent of the federal government regarding enforcement of federal immigration laws. This means that CUPD will not honor a civil immigration detainer request from a federal agent unless accompanied by a judicial warrant except in the narrow circumstances delineated in Tompkins County Resolution 2017-21. CUPD will not seek immigration status information of any individual in the course of its law enforcement activities unless necessary to investigate criminal activity by that individual or required by law. (They are required, however, to ask the citizenship of arrested individuals.) Cornell Police have always acted, and will continue to perform their duties, in a professional manner and in the spirit of rules established for officers in the City of Ithaca and Tompkins County.” —Cornell’s joint statement affirming support for DACA students, April 10, 2017. Read the full statement here.

The Tompkins County Legislature passed a resolution making the county a "sanctuary county." This resolution serves to "maintain a safe, inclusive government and ensure the protection, order, conduct, safety, health, and well-being of all persons in Tompkins County." The city of Ithaca has a similar resolution. Like all such sanctuary resolutions across the country, however, the local resolutions cannot legally bar federal immigration officials from entering the county and city. For more on immigration sanctuary policies generally, see the Searching for Sanctuary Report and the National Map of Local Entanglement with ICE both from the Immigrant Legal Resource Center.