Student groups to hold immigration forum


As Congress embroils itself in contentious debates over creating comprehensive immigration reform, students at USF will have the opportunity to voice their opinions on the topic.

Student Government and organizations from around the university will be hosting an immigration forum tonight at 6:30. The forum, “Students United: Our Country, Our Movement,” will take place in MSC 4200.

With the current changes taking place in immigration law and the ongoing debate in Congress, 14 student organizations have teamed up to host the event in the hopes students will interact with experts and engage in conversation on this topic.

Xizi Zhang, a freshman majoring in economics, said he is closely monitoring the current debate in Congress and plans on attending the event.

“There are so many changes taking place in immigration reform, and unfortunately, it is not as widely covered in the media as I would like it to be,” Zhang said. “I am personally interested in this forum because being an immigrant myself, I want to stay updated on this issue.”

The event will be conducted in a town hall-style fashion, moderated by Joan Pynes, a professor from the School of Public Affairs. It will offer students the opportunity to participate in the debate, as well as become informed by others invested in the debate.

The conversation will feature a variety of topics, including the current debate in Congress, the economic benefits of immigration and the role of faith-based organizations in helping immigrants adjust.

Some guest speakers that will be at the event include Isabel Sousa-Rodriguez from the Florida Immigrant Coalition, Christopher Cano from Mi Familia Vota, the Rev. Russell Meyer from the Florida Council of Churches and Merline Raymond from Fanm Kreyol, Inc.

“It is very important that students come out for this event as it offers an excellent insight on the much heated debate on immigration,” Adeel Hassan, an SG senator, said. “Students can acquire first-hand information from community leaders and experts about the ongoing dispute in Congress regarding this issue. I encourage everyone to come out and participate in one of largest educational events at USF.”

Food and drinks will be provided by Sweetbay, Tijuana Flats and Chipotle.