It’s a question they don’t want to have to ask. “If this goes away…what are they going to do?”
Edder Diaz Martinez was brought to the United States from Mexico at 5 years old and is now a senior at ASU and one of roughly 300 DACA students at the university. He said right now he pays $7,000 per semester, but if in-state tuition is taken away from so-called Dreamers, that would drastically change.
“I would pay about $14,000 per semester. So it’s almost double,” said Diaz Martinez. “Paying almost $30,000 a year, then $60,000, there’s no way I could afford that.”
In-state tuition for DACA students was granted by the Maricopa County Community College District but is now held up in court because of Attorney General Mark Brnovich. Brnovich said "Dreamers" are not eligible for lower tuition because of a 2006 proposition that does not allow DACA recipients to receive public benefits.
Diaz Martinez said that's a double standard when it comes to public schools because DACA students pay taxes and contribute to the public universities.
“You’re talking about people who want to be doctors, they want to go into professions, STEM professions to contribute,” said Diaz Martinez.
He said the most detrimental part is how many DACA students would be forced to drop out of school due to financial constraints if their tuition doubles, which is a concern that's weighing on them emotionally too.
“At the end of the day, we do want to have normal lives. We want to feel like we are a normal person and a normal college student,” said Diaz Martinez.
The DACA students will start their news conference at 8:30 Monday morning outside the Arizona Supreme Court, and even though oral arguments begin Monday, that decision likely won't be made for a couple months.
MORE related stories:
AZ state attorneys take DACA in-state tuition battle to court (Jan. 10, 2017) Judge: Dreamers can get in-state tuition in Arizona (May 5, 2015)DACA changes worry Dreamers, immigrant activists Trump's decision to end DACA has plenty of supportClick/tap here to download the free azfamily mobile app
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