Fall 2019: Immigration Reform

Fall 2019

Immigration Reform


This fall 2019, our POSC 395 Policy Research Internship students researched the issue of immigration and viable immigration reforms in the United States. They presented their extensive research and policy suggestions to our partner, USC Gould Immigrants and Global Migration Initiative (IGMI), and its Director, Elle Fersan.

Joshua Rodriguez, a senior majoring in Political Science, said this about what he gained from his research experience, "Throughout this research project, I have become more exposed to the intricacies and challenges presented by something as consequential and far-reaching as immigration policy reform. In a world where immigration is such a contentious issue, this experience has provided me with the necessary tools to fully understand America’s immigration narrative and how it continues to affect us today."

Project: Formulating 21st Century U.S. Immigration Reform

USC Students: Joshua Rodriguez, Shwetha Ganesh, Matthew Chu, Maverick Freedlander, Jamie Vange, and Lauren Mattice

Research Question: How can we use the cross-sections of historical immigration legislation and the immigration platforms of the leading Democratic candidates in the 2020 Presidential election to formulate practical immigration policy reform that will confront 21st century challenges?

Policy Proposals

Economic Policy Recommendations:

  • Allocate 50% of annual green cards to a merit-based system
  • Increase the allocation of temporary H-2A and H-2B visas
  • Targeted foreign aid for immigration enforcement and border security for Central American countries
  • Increase federal government enforcement of employer sanctions

Political Policy Recommendations:

  • Increase funding for border security
  • Restructure Executive Jurisdiction
  • Restructuring Judicial Proceedings
  • Pass the DREAM Act

Read the group's full research presentation on U.S. Immigration Reform.

Watch the full video of their presentation.