Universities And The “Undocumented”

I was in college across the Bay from Berkeley when the Free Speech Movement erupted on that campus. I recall a headline, probably in the San Francisco Chronicle, announcing at one point that UC Chancellor Clark Kerr would “crack down on off-campus non-students.”

I thought at the time that doing so would be unrealistically ambitious, the world being filled as it is with off-campus non-students. And now I’ve just been reminded of that headline by an article in today’s Charlottesville Daily Progress, “Hundreds rally at UVa against Trump immigration order,” reporting that ” UVa President Teresa A. Sullivan issued a statement saying the university supports undocumented and refugee students.”

“Being a great university in the 21st century means being a global university,” President Sullivan preened in her statement that was high on moral gloss but low on relevance to the current controversy, “and our entire University community is enriched and enlightened by interacting with teachers and students from other nations. Providing these experiences is an investment in the future as we seek to build international cooperation and peace.”

Perhaps it is time for all public universities to eliminate their exclusionary, divisive residency requirements based on parochial national, state, and local borders and open admissions on equal terms to residents of the world.

Say What?