Campus Reform | UConn course has students partner with 'immigrant justice' 'activist' groups, but won't say which ones

UConn course has students partner with 'immigrant justice' 'activist' groups, but won't say which ones

A one-credit social justice class at the University of Connecticut will focus on “immigration justice.”

The course would connect students with local "activist" groups."

The school refused to disclose which "activist" groups it is working with, however, citing the risk of being "targeted by ICE."

The University of Connecticut’s Latino and Latin American Department announced it will introduce a new course for students to focus on immigration justice.

According to The Daily Campus, the course, LLAS 3390: Organizing for Immigrant Justice, is a one-credit 50-minute class that would lead students to partner with Connecticut activism groups through an immigration activism project. 

There's just one problem, though. The university won't disclose which "activist" groups with which it is partnering, citing the risk of those organizations being "targeted by ICE."

Students will be able to choose which local activist groups to work with, and according to the outlet, will get a chance to understand the immigration system through a legal lens.

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The Associate Director of UConn’s El Instituto and the professor teaching the class, Anne Gebelein, told The Daily Campus that the class will give students “the opportunity to work with local activist groups in Connecticut to participate in organizing projects that support immigrants,” with the class primarily focusing on why and how immigrants migrate. 

Speakers from the UConn College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Anti-Racist Activist-in-Residence Program will also speak to the class, according to the article.

Center for Immigration Studies Executive Director Mark Krikorian told Campus Reform that this type of class doesn’t surprise him. 

“It is the kind of thing you would almost read in a Babylon Bee parody on higher education and yet it is not a parody it’s the real thing. If the taxpayers of Connecticut and the parents of students are going to be paying money for open borders activism then there ought to be a class for closed border activism. Although really it is not clear why either one of those have anything to do with higher education," Krikorian said.

Campus Reform also asked Krikorian if he expected that more classes like this one would continue to pop up. He responded by saying that "this has been a common theme in law schools already where almost every law school has an immigration law clinic which basically is just anti-immigration enforcement activism. Trickling down to undergraduate courses where they actually get credit for it sounds new to me, but I expect it to spread, whatever administration is in power, I don’t know if it matters, because trendy schools are probably going to do more.” 

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Krikorian said that if someone suggested a one-credit class on enforcing America's borders, it would likely be shut down: “It is not even just that this is not an appropriate activity for higher education, it is that it is entirely one-sided like so much else in higher education." 

The Associate Director for El Instituto, Anne Gebelein, told Campus Reform, "we do hope to offer it every semester, but it is still getting off the ground." 

When asked which local activist groups with which students can work, she declined to answer, saying, "some of our community partners prefer to stay under the radar, as they don’t want to be targeted by ICE. It’s a long story. But we would rather not name our principal partner in the press.”

Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @Jess__Custodio