CCSF to offer free and confidential legal consultation services to students, faculty, and staff beginning this March
City College of San Francisco (CCSF) has been selected to serve as a regional center to provide critical legal services for immigrant students, faculty, and staff of California community colleges. Beginning this March, the Immigration Institute of the Bay Area will begin providing these free and confidential legal services on the College’s Ocean Campus.
“We are proud to stand in solidarity with immigrant students, faculty, and staff here at CCSF and at community colleges across California,” said Dr. Mark W. Rocha, Chancellor of CCSF. “Our ability to offer these free and confidential legal services will help address a critical need for one of our most vulnerable populations. Along with CCSF’s new CityDREAM Center, which provides vital resources for undocumented students, these services will help many of our students overcome their greatest barrier to fully accessing the American dream, and rounds out the comprehensive services we provide to our DACA community.”
The selection of CCSF as a host site, which came at the conclusion of a highly competitive screening process, was made jointly by the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office, the California Department of Social Services, and the Foundation for California Community Colleges (FCCC).
The need for these legal services on campus was identified through the recently implemented California Community Colleges Dreamers Project — an FCCC project whose mission is to identify, and lay the groundwork for meeting undocumented students’ needs. CCSF was one of just 64 host sites selected throughout California. The James Irvine Foundation provides funding for the Dreamers Project.
“Our responsibility is to empower undocumented students and to provide educational services to foster student success,” said Guillermo Villanueva, Dean of Financial Aid & Special Programs. “I’d also like to thank and acknowledge my colleagues, Dean of Grants and Resource Development Ilona McGriff and Deputy General Counsel Leilani Battiste, for their work and dedication in securing CCSF as the site to offer these critical legal services.”
CCSF is proud to offer several different forms of support and assistance to undocumented members of the community. The College’s new CityDREAM Center, which opened in August 2019, grew out of the 2012 founding of the student organization Voices of Immigrants Demonstrating Achievement (VIDA). The DREAM Center’s resources include a dedicated program coordinator, a financial aid specialist, an academic counselor, and regular events to provide a welcoming student hub for all students affected by issues of immigration or citizenship status. The College's AB540 Task Force has made these services possible while funding scholarships for immigrant students. The College also has official designations as a Minority Serving Institution, Hispanic Serving Institution, and Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander-Serving Institutions, which provides access to funding sources to support these student cohorts.
As a sanctuary college, within a sanctuary city, within a sanctuary state, the CCSF Board of Trustees adopted a resolution in September 2017 declaring that District employees will not assist in federal immigration enforcement activities.
Legal services will be offered to the CCSF community beginning this coming March. For more information about these services, please visit the CCSF Legal Services web page. To schedule an appointment with legal counsel, please visit this page. For questions, please contact City DREAM Coordinator Jacquline Yañez at (415) 452-5919.