President Trump’s recent Executive Order is injurious to our work and inimical to our values. The damage already done to the lawful freedoms and opportunities of our students and colleagues, here and around the world, is undeniable and indefensible. This Order will weaken the promise of educational opportunity, intellectual discovery, and global engagement that so distinguishes American universities.
I am the daughter of a Jewish immigrant who fled Nazi Germany. My grandfather was an immigrant. My son-in-law is an immigrant. My family’s story is part of a proud and productive American story, as is all of yours.
Immigration strengthens the fabric of this nation and our University. Immigrants spark innovation, launch new businesses, and enrich our culture and arts. They are a precious national resource and invaluable to Penn.
We must stand together, united in our support of beloved colleagues, students, friends, and families who, no matter where they come from or how they worship, have contributed so much to our University community and to this country.
We are heirs to Penn’s heritage as the nation’s first secular university, where all religions are welcome. We are heirs to the genius and humanity of Ben Franklin.
As such, we must not and will not remain silent. We stand for open-hearted compassion and open-minded opportunity. We will remain unyielding in our allegiance to our fundamental principles and to each other. Penn will not bend.
Staff across the University are right now assisting our affected community members with legal counsel and other resources.
In addition to those efforts, we will do everything in our power, speak to every friend and ally, and leave no stone unturned in our efforts to urge President Trump to change course and rectify the horrible damage this Order has caused.
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