A group of college students, faculty, and guests spent their spring break this year travelling to the Houston area from Auburn, Alabama to volunteer on work crews repairing homes damaged during Hurricane Harvey last August. The group included seven graduate and undergraduate students and two faculty members from the McWhorter School of Building Science which is part of the Auburn University College of Architecture, Design, and Construction. Two of the students are attending Auburn as international students from the countries of Nepal and Pakistan. Also travelling from Alabama were two volunteers from Auburn United Methodist Church. Their work assignments were coordinated by Texas Recovers, a relief organization funded by the United Methodist Committee on Relief, the Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund, and individual donations.
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If passion, energy and heated rhetoric could solve our immigration issues, then Congress would have long ago passed a comprehensive reform bill. Instead, as slogans grow more bitter, workable solutions recede. Civil discourse, not inflammatory speech, ultimately propels progress. Thankfully, the Center for Houston's Future, a non-profit, has stepped into the breach with a series of films directed by Gregory Kallenberg that aim to create a common ground and spark conversation among the silent majority of Americans who largely agree on a mix of immigration reform policies, including a path to legal status for undocumented immigrants.