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Sociologists Available to Discuss Obama’s
New Policy for Undocumented Young People

WASHINGTON, DC, June 15, 2012 — The American Sociological Association (ASA) has sociologists available to discuss the Obama administration’s announcement on Friday that it is changing its policy toward undocumented young people. As reported by the Associated Press, “the Obama administration will stop deporting and begin granting work permits to younger illegal immigrants who came to the U.S. as children and have since led law-abiding lives.”

Roberto G. Gonzales is an Assistant Professor at the University of Chicago School of Social Service Administration. He received his Ph.D. in sociology from the University of California, Irvine. Gonzales’ research focuses on the ways in which legal and educational institutions shape the everyday experiences of poor, minority, and immigrant youth along the life course and the important ways in which they respond. Over the last decade, he has been engaged in critical inquiry regarding what happens to undocumented immigrant children as they make the transitions to adolescence and young adulthood. His study, “Learning to Be Illegal: Undocumented Youth and Shifting Legal Contexts in the Transition to Adulthood,” appeared in the American Sociological Review last year.

Rubén G. Rumbaut is a Professor of Sociology at the University of California, Irvine. He is the author of more than 150 scientific papers on immigrants and refugees in the U.S., and coauthor or coeditor of a dozen books, including Immigrant America: A Portrait and Legacies: The Story of the Immigrant Second Generation. Since 1991, he has directed (with Alejandro Portes) the landmark Children of Immigrants Longitudinal Study (CILS), which has followed the trajectories into early adulthood of thousands of youth representing dozens of different nationalities, primarily from Latin America and Asia.

To request an interview, contact Daniel Fowler, ASA’s Media Relations and Public Affairs Officer, at (202) 527-7885 or  


About the American Sociological Association
The American Sociological Association (, founded in 1905, is a non-profit membership association dedicated to serving sociologists in their work, advancing sociology as a science and profession, and promoting the contributions to and use of sociology by society.