Tuition vote tonight by PCC Governing Board - Tucson News Now

PCC Board approves in-state tuition for undocumented students

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TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

Pima Community College will allow students in the deferred deportation program to pay in-state tuition. 

Of the six campuses and 30,000 students who go to Pima, officials say this would only affect a fraction, but it is one piece of a much larger nationwide discussion. 

Maricopa Community College said yes not too long ago, sending a message that other colleges could say yes too. 

However, the Arizona Board of Regents, which oversees NAU, ASU and U of A, voted ‘no'. 

Officials say the board is keeping in mind the college's responsibility to educate.  They also point out that Arizona's economic health depend on having skilled, educated workers.  Officials here say dreamer's arguments are resonating with people all over.  

The Pima Community College governing board approved the measure 4 to 1 Wednesday night.

Both the Pima Community College governing board president and those students who are here without citizenship but who have been here since they were very young say state law already allows a work permit, which they have, will provide residency status.  They also say that making sure these people have access to in-state tuition benefits the community.

"We are already contributing to the community but if we're able to get our education faster, we will be able to make an impact even bigger," said Luis Hernandez, a member of Scholarships A-Z and who also has a work permit as a deferred action student.

"We want individuals who are well-educated, and moving forward and contributing to their community. and I think that's what these young people want to do and want to be," said PCC governing board president Brenda Even.

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