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Based on advice from the Office of the Attorney General, the North Carolina Community College System (NCCCS) will no longer admit undocumented or illegal immigrants into curriculum degree programs.
The NCCCS sought the help of the attorney general only a few months after a memorandum was issued in December 2007 mandating the 58 community colleges in the state to admit all undocumented individuals at an out-of-state tuition rate.
According to a press release, the decision to admit all undocumented individuals was based on the NCCCS’s interpretation of an earlier advisory letter issued by the attorney general.
“Community colleges could not impose nonacademic criteria for admission, which supported the ‘open door’ policy of the NCCCS,” the release states.
On May 6, the Office of the Attorney General sent the NCCCS a letter, recommending they prohibit undocumented individuals from enrollment into degree programs while the admission policy undergoes further review.
“We have accepted the Attorney General’s offer to seek federal clarification of this issue, and they are pursuing that information,” R. Scott Ralls, system president said in a press release.
“Until we receive further clarification, we will no longer admit individuals classified as illegal or undocumented immigrants into curriculum degree programs.”
A survey done for the 2006-2007 school year showed out of 296,540 students enrolled in community colleges statewide, 112 were undocumented individuals.
Dr. Stephen Greiner, president of Brunswick Community College, said there is only one student at the college the mandate would affect, but the NCCCS is allowing those undocumented individuals who enrolled prior to the 2008-2009 school year to complete their degree programs.
The new admission policy has no restriction on high school students taking community college classes or on any adult taking non-college level courses, such as GED, Adult High School, ELS, and continuing education classes.