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California College Student ‘Refreshed’ By DACA Decision

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The Supreme Court decision to uphold a program that protects immigrants who were brought to the U.S. as children from deportation impacts thousands of California college students.

One of them is 21-year-old Adan Arguelles, who’s studying film production at Pasadena City College. He found out about the court’s decision around 7 a.m. this morning.

“I’m feeling really, really refreshed. You're in that period where you're in between waking up and sleeping, so whatever you see feels dreamlike.”

Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, DACA, allows Arguelles, who came to California from Tijuana when he was 6 years old, to apply for a work permit. He also pays in-state tuition thanks to AB 540.
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“My number one goal is to, you know, find something I'm good at ... a place where I'm able to grow,” Arguelles said.

In 2016, when the Trump Administration announced the end of the Obama-era program, Pasadena City College estimated there were 1,100 DACA students enrolled at that time.

The University of California also celebrated the court decision. The prestigious university system was the first to sue the federal government over the Trump administration’s move to rescind the program,

“Although the battle to provide a permanent status for DACA participants continues, and much sacrifice and struggle remains, today we join the entire UC community and all DACA recipients to celebrate this day of justice,” UC Regents chair John A. Pérez said in a statement.

KPCC + LAist community engagement intern Nubia Perez contributed to this story.

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