Statement on Safeguarding our Community

February 17, 2017

The UMass Amherst administration is committed to supporting all students, faculty and staff, regardless of their immigration status, and the campus has initiated a number of steps to safeguard members of our community.
As Chancellor Kumble Subbaswamy noted in a message to the campus community, “We will do everything within our legal and moral authority to protect our students, faculty and staff whether they be undocumented immigrants, refugees or international students.”
Declaring UMass Amherst a “sanctuary campus” is not in the best interests of the university community because the term has no legal definition and would not provide any additional legal protection for students, faculty and staff. Such a declaration could unintentionally create a false sense of security for those affected by federal actions. And it would potentially bring unwanted attention to vulnerable members of the campus community, such as students currently studying through the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.
It could also jeopardize federal funding to support our mission, including hundreds of millions of dollars for financial aid to students and research support for faculty.
For more information on UMass Amherst actions to protect immigrant and international students, go to

Ed Blaguszewski
UMass Amherst campus spokesman