Laurene Powell Jobs, the wife of the late Apple cofounder Steve Jobs, has been a supporter of the DREAM Act for years. That’s according to a Washington Post profile of leaders in the Silicon Valley that support the bill that would give undocumented students a path to legalization.
The Washington Post’s Miriam Jordan profiled Silicon Valley technology leaders that “are funding efforts to help undocumented youths attend college,” including Mrs. Jobs:
The group includes Jeff Hawkins, inventor of the Palm Pilot; and the family foundations of Andrew Grove, co-founder of Intel Corp.; and Mark Leslie, founder of the former Veritas Software Corp. Laurene Powell Jobs, widow of Apple Inc. co-founder Steve Jobs, has for years supported undocumented students through her organizations that help low-income high-school students.
The Silicon Valley money is part of a broader response by individuals and states to Congress, which hasn’t passed the Dream Act. That federal legislation would offer a path to legalization for illegal immigrants who graduate from a U.S. high school and attend college or join the military.
“We think Congress’s inaction…is devastating for these students and tragic for the country,” said Ms. Powell Jobs, who was one of the first in the tech community to champion the Dream Act by lobbying her congresswoman and writing an op-ed piece supporting the legislation.
Powell is also a board member at the New America Foundation and according to her profile there she has been helping “under-represented” students in the Bay Area since 1997—6-years after she married Steve Jobs.
Ms. Powell Jobs also serves as president of the board of College Track, an after-school program she founded in 1997 to prepare underserved high school students for success in college. Started in East Palo Alto, College Track has expanded to serve students in Oakland, San Francisco and New Orleans. The program’s intensive academic and extracurricular program is designed to ensure admittance to and graduation from college. All of the program’s graduates have completed their secondary education and gone on to college.
Approximately 65,000 undocumented students graduate from U.S. high schools each year, UCLA Center for Labor Research and Education. Of this number, roughly 40 percent, or 26,000, undocumented youth reside in the state of California.
South Carolina bans undocumented students from attending state colleges. Alabama and Georgia are also attempting to ban undocumented students entirely from public colleges even in cases when students can pay full tuition upfront.