June 10, 2014

Educational Studies Prof. William Pérez to advise UC President Janet Napolitano on undocumented students

William Pérez, professor in Claremont Graduate University’s School of Educational Studies, has been appointed to serve on a committee that will advise University of California President Janet Napolitano on issues surrounding undocumented students.
Pérez is one of 18 experts selected for the President’s Advisory Group on Undocumented Students, and one of only two committee members from outside of the UC system. The group held its first meeting on May 30 at the University of California President’s Office in Oakland, California.

Napolitano, who served as secretary of the US Department of Homeland Security before leading the UC system, assembled the group to advise her on how to improve access and success for undocumented students interested in attending college within the UC system. The committee will also oversee a UC summit on undocumented students and apprise Napolitano on the undocumented student experience at UC.

The UC system has 10 campuses and serves more than 230,000 students.

Pérez is one of the nation’s leading experts on the academic achievement, civic engagement, and higher education access of undocumented students in the United States. His past research has demonstrated that these youth contribute in a variety of ways to the civic vitality of their communities and school campuses, yet those contributions are often misunderstood by the general public and policy-makers.

He has published three books in this field: We ARE Americans: Undocumented Students Pursuing the American Dream (Stylus, 2009), Undocumented Latino Students: Their Socioemotional and Academic Experiences (LFB Scholarly Publishing, 2011), and Americans by Heart: Undocumented Latino Students and the Promise of Higher Education (Teachers College Press, 2012).