NCORE Webinar Series
Keeping the Dream Alive: A College-wide Approach to Embracing DREAMers
Presenters: Eric Lara, Ph.D., Associate Dean, Student Success and Equity | Laura Muniz, Counselor, DREAM Program | Darío Fernandez, Director, DREAM Program
$25.00 | Purchase this webinar on-demand
Closed captioning provided.
Undocumented students bear an unusually heavy burden to attend and maintain their enrollment in college. With the rescission of DACA, Dream students need institutional safety nets to assist with, and assure, their continued enrollment and overall support. An overview of undocumented students' issues, the DACA dilemma, and specific actions that colleges can take to institute policies and practices that support DREAM students will be presented. Specific services, strategies, student stories, and approaches in working with Dream students and how the Dream Center was established on campus will also be shared. This session should particularly benefit those institutions, faculty, staff, and administrators who are searching for alternative ways to support and guide their DACAmented students, as well as staff who provide, or would like to provide, direct services to undocumented students but may not know the appropriate approach.
Dr. Eric Lara is the Associate Dean, Student Success and Equity at Mt. San Antonio College. In his current role, Dr. Lara oversees all Student Equity funding on campus, $3.5M, and the four equity programs: ARISE (Asian American and Pacific Islander Students), ASPIRE (African American Students), DREAM (Undocumented Students) and REACH (Current and Former Foster Youth), and Co-Chair for the Student Equity Committee.
His professional experience spans over fifteen years and three levels of the California Higher Educational system. Eric has worked as the Director of the Mathematics Engineering Science Achievement (MESA) program at College of the Canyons, as the Director of Student Affairs in Electrical Engineering at UC San Diego, and he started his career as the Retention Coordinator and Academic Advisor for the Maximizing Engineering Potential (MEP) Program at Cal Poly Pomona.
Dr. Lara holds a Doctorate in Education with an emphasis in Higher Educational Leadership from the University of Southern California, as well as a Master’s in Education and Bachelor’s in Electronics and Computer Engineering Technology, both from Cal Poly Pomona.
Darío Fernandez is a first-generation, formerly undocumented, college graduate. Darío attended Santa Ana College before transferring to California State University, Long Beach where he earned his undergraduate degree in Chican@/Latin@ Studies and Political Science and his Master in Education with an option in social and cultural analysis of education. Currently he is a Doctoral candidate in the Higher Ed/Community College Leadership program at California State University, Northridge.
Previously, Dario has worked in helping implement Hispanic Serving Institutions (HSI) federal grants, non-profit immigrants’ rights organizations, and his most recent experience was at CSU Northridge where he started as the inaugural Coordinator, and subsequently promoted to Director, of the DREAM Center. Dario currently serves as the Director of the DREAM Program at Mt. San Antonio College (Mt. SAC).
Laura Muñiz serves as the full-time Dream counselor and faculty member at Mt. San Antonio College. The value she brings to this position is of a well-rounded Counselor/Educator with over 20 years of experience in higher education. Her vast knowledge is extensive because of her experience working in various student affairs areas, such as Financial Aid, EOPS, Upward Bound and many other programs that serve underprivileged students from diverse backgrounds. She has worked in various systems of higher education, California Community College and CSU. Her passion lies in assisting students to succeed no matter what their academic, socioeconomic, disabled, cultural, ethnic backgrounds may be
Having migrated from Mexico at the age of five years of age, she understands first-hand what it is like to be a Dreamer. Therefore, she holds this population to heart and ensures that they have what they need in order to succeed. She is recognized as having thorough knowledge of community resources, extensive work in multicultural environments, problem solver and creative leader with an impeccable work ethic. Her goal is based on strong motivation to develop a caring learning community where students with exceptionalities can fully participate and be academically successful.