Texas State administrators started the process of hiring a part-time attorney with immigration expertise in an effort to have the new hire on-campus by fall 2019.
On Sept. 25, 2017, a Student Government resolution trying to bring an immigration attorney to campus co-authored by Senator-at-large Alexander Molina, political science senior, failed
More publicity came to the university’s initiative in hiring an attorney came during a student protest starting on April 11 in the LBJ Student Center when students occupied the building for over 2 days. The students demanded action for administration from protesters included a published action plan and timeline concerning the hiring of the attorney. The protest ended April 13 after all demands were met by the administration.
“I believe (the hiring of an attorney) is finally happening now because of the students,” Molina said. “They never stopped fighting for it… everything happening right now is because we want what is right and it is what we pushed for. At the end of the day, we got what we deserved.”
President Denise Trauth confirmed the university is moving to hire an immigration attorney.
Trauth said Shannon FitzPatrick, director of the Office of Attorney for Students, is working on bringing pro-bono attorneys to campus in the meantime.
In an announcement by the Dean of Students office, the staff attorney will be unable to represent students in a court of law, give legal advice concerning issues against Texas State or advise concerning legal problems against another Texas State student.
The Dean of Student’s timeline projects Human Resources to publish the job posting for the staff attorney position during the week of May 7 and a start date for to be during the week of August 12. This would allow the position to be filled before the first class day of Fall 2018, August 27, and be available for the student body throughout the year.
Molina said he understands the administration’s perspective on hiring a part-time attorney as of now but hopes to see the position become full-time in the future.
On April 18, the Dean of Students held a Pro Bono Day with three immigration attorneys for students seeking legal consultation. More information can be found here.