Nearly 80 colleges see protests as students demand protection.

With a crackdown on undocumented immigrants likely coming after President-elect Trump takes office, students from more than 80 universities across the country staged class walkouts and engaged in campus sit-ins on Wednesday. The protesters are demanding that more universities and colleges become sanctuaries for undocumented students, and refuse access to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials.

The campuses where these protests took place ranged from New York’s Vassar College and Iowa State University to University of Texas San Antonio. Local student groups organized protests with the support of Movimiento Cosecha, a group advocating for the protection of the immigrant community.

Trump has promised to eliminate the Obama-era executive action Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), which allows undocumented immigrants who entered the country before age 16 to get a renewable two-year work permit and an exemption from deportation. As of June 30, over one million DACA cases have been approved since 2012. Trump could either dissolve existing permits when he dismantles the executive order, or let them expire on their own. It’s unclear which option Trump will take.

“There is no policy that protects the safety of undocumented students.”

Renata Mauriz, a junior studying policy and ethnic studies at Brown University, is one of the undocumented immigrants who protested in favor of sanctuary universities on Wednesday.

Mauriz said she hoped that Brown University and others will develop a sanctuary policy to protect undocumented students. She said Brown had supported undocumented students by considering DACA-status students as they would U.S. citizens’ applications. That allows DACA-status students to benefit from the university’s need-blind policy.

“They are going toward this direction but there is no policy that protects the safety of undocumented students,” Mauriz said. “I’m hoping they do really care about this issue.”

In addition to killing DACA, the Trump administration could also revoke the November 2014 Department of Homeland Security memorandum that announced the Priority Enforcement Program, ensuring ICE focuses on undocumented immigrants who pose the greatest threat to national security — such as those suspected of terrorism or espionage, and those convicted of aggravated felonies.

Center for American Progress Vice President of immigration policy Tom Jawetz said the Priority Enforcement Program exists to offer guidelines on how ICE should make the best use of the resources it has available.

“It is a pretty noncontroversial concept that when you have limited resources, you should decide how those resources should best be used in order to enforce the law and ensure public safety,” said Jawetz. “That is something every law enforcement agency across the country is forced to do.”

Jawetz added that many anti-immigration organizations have fought against the idea of prioritizing enforcement efforts by risk to public safety.

Trump may also ax a 2011 memorandum that directs ICE officers not to conduct searches and arrests at schools, places of worship, hospitals, weddings, funerals, and public demonstrations. That order includes a handful of exceptions, such as in cases where an undocumented immigrant is suspected of terrorism.

“The idea behind the memorandum is that these are particularly important institutions in our society, and you don’t want to discourage American children from going to school because their parents don’t want to bring them there,” Jawetz said. “You don’t want people who need emergency health care to not go to the hospital because they’re afraid immigration enforcement agents will be looking through the rolls and waiting to pick them up.”

Mauriz said she was not surprised by the election results, given the hostility she has witnessed toward undocumented immigrants and what she saw as the “normalization” of Trump’s anti-immigrant rhetoric. But she said she is particularly concerned about her family’s undocumented status in a Trump administration.

She said she hopes that the protest will both serve as a symbolic statement, telling fellow Americans that students do not support anti-immigrant rhetoric and policies; and that it would accomplish the goal of making more universities and colleges adopt sanctuary policies.

“I’m hoping they do really care about this issue, not just symbolically, but by publicly declaring Brown a sanctuary,” Mauriz said.

When asked how she felt a week after finding out Trump will assume the presidency in January, she said that, despite her fears, “I feel inspired and re-energized.”