EVERY CAMPUS A REFUGE - Agnes Scott College
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In response to the recent international tragedies and a large public opposition within the United States about accepting refugees, I can think of no better way to think deeply, live honorably, and engage in the social and intellectual challenges of our time than to offer a space at Agnes Scott College for a refugee family (or families) to take refuge. Although U.S. governors like our very own Nathan Deal cannot, constitutionally and legally, prevent the federal government from sending refugees to their states for resettlement; they can choose to disband or defund their resettlement agencies. This is why now, more than ever, private colleges and universities can play a pivotal role in housing and resettling refugees.
Just like the founder of the original Every Campus a Refuge campaign, Professor Diya Abdo of Guilford College, I, too, have felt at a loss for a means to do something tangible to help the refugees who are being used as scapegoats by many misinformed politicians and citizens alike. Like Professor Abdo, I wondered: "What if [our] small liberal arts school used the resources unique to higher education communities to house, mentor and support a Syrian family in transition? And what if every college in America did the same?" Dr. Abdo reasoned that the answer to "Where would we put them? Who could possibly accommodate the refugees?" was easily answered by the many amenities and dispersed monetary impact of a college campus: "with their housing, cafeterias, health clinics, and plethora of other social, academic and human resources, were natural conduits for refugees into their new life" (Washington Post). Following in her footsteps of global leadership and compassion, I have created this petition to rally the support of our wonderful Agnes Scott College community before I present a plan to President Kiss.
Modeled after the original Every Campus a Refuge campaign at Guilford College (www.everycampusarefuge.org the Every Campus a Refuge campaign at Agnes Scott College is a way for our community to work together to materially assist refugee resettlement agencies by housing a refugee family at Agnes Scott College. By providing housing or other amenities for our refugee family, it allows them to save their one-time government allotted stipend for when they are required by the federal government to become self-sufficient. In partnering with a local resettlement agency, The International Rescue Committee of Atlanta, our campus can materially assist them in the important work they do. This petition is intended to showcase the support of the *entire* Agnes Scott College community--current students, alumnae, faculty, and staff. So whether you studied, taught, or worked at Agnes Scott College in the past or are a current student or faculty member at ASC, please sign, share, and tell all of your Scottie friends to do so as well!
I am hoping we can join together in true Scottie spirit--despite whatever challenges becoming a refuge may pose--and engage in this social challenge of our time. It is, I believe, the right and honorable thing to do.
Human Rights Major
Agnes Scott College - Class of 2017
QUESTIONS? Please e-mail everycampusarefugeASC@gmail.com if you have any questions. For more information, check out the Every Campus a Refuge campaign at http://everycampusarefuge.org/ or https://www.facebook.com/everycampusrefuge
WANT TO HELP MORE? There is now a fundraising site set up for the Every Campus a Refuge ASC campaign where you can donate. All funds will be reserved for offsetting the cost of housing the refugee family at Agnes Scott College. https://fundly.com/m2/every-campus-a-refuge-asc
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