Nearly five years in to its existence, nearly three-quarters of a million young people are working and attending school legally under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. Nearly 65 of the nation’s medical schools have committed to accepting qualified DACA applicants. And some have already completed their studies and are in graduate medical training or beyond.
But President-Elect Trump has promised to end programs like DACA that relied on executive actions from President Obama. If that happens, the fate of these students will be up in the air. Some may be able to continue attending medical school if their institutions allow undocumented students to matriculate. Some schools would probably have to expel DACA students depending on their state and institution rules. Those in residency programs would likely lose their positions because it is illegal to knowingly employ someone without employment authorization.
This week, the Public Radio International show The World reports on Loyola University in Chicago’s nation-leading program to educate DACA recipients in medicine.
On a positive note, it looks like President-Elect Trump is not as gung ho to kill DACA as some of the immigration restrictionists would have us believe. I recently wrote about Mr. Trump’s recent remarks that he sympathized with the plight of the DREAMers and was interested in making a deal that would make people happy and proud. Let us hope.