Local Connection: Undocumented Students

By Rick Blangiardi

State universities have always charged out-of-state students more, reserving the lowest tuition rates for in-state residents.

But, a dozen states extend this to local students who are undocumented immigrants. Three states even let them apply for state financial aid.

The Hawaii State Senate has a bill to make Hawaii the fourth state to do so.

All right-thinking people understand that children are not responsible for misdeeds of their parents, including illegal immigration.

But does this mean undocumented students should get the same taxpayer-assisted tuition as legal residents of the state?

This charitable act might be endorsed if we could all agree that legal residents were getting all the tuition assistance they need. But is this the case?

It's reasonable to ask if paying tax dollars for the college education of undocumented immigrants should be undertaken before we have done all we can for Hawaii residents - including legal immigrants.

It seems a little weird to create an incentive for more people to move here illegally while we're still not doing enough for Hawaii's financially challenged residents.

Copyright 2012 Hawaii News Now. All rights reserved.