Higher Education’s Role in the Support of Diverse and Ever-Changing New American Cities
Keywords:immigrants, refugees, newcomers
Urban institutions are typically located in diverse and vibrant cities. This diversity has changed over the decades, thus requiring campuses to address the complexity that is seen as these new American cities evolve. In this article the city of Buffalo is discussed as a city that manifests a continuous change in population diversity with a significant increase in the immigrant and refugee populations. The ways that Buffalo State College has evolved its outreach to support immigrants, refugees, and new Americans is discussed, approaches that include ways to support entry and success within the city school systems, support for families and adults learning the English language and preparing for citizenship exams, convening and support to navigate their new location, and assistance in business efforts. Extensions of the mission of urban institutions to support these new members of city communities allows campuses to participate fully in addressing the needs of this important segment of our cities. Immigrant and refugee families add to the vibrancy and economic success of our communities and facilitating their adjustment, integration, and success within our cities not only provides needed support for new American families, but adds to the current and future economic and social success of the community where they now call home. This is an important aspect of the urban anchor mission.