NEW YORK (FOX5NY) - 21-year-old Antonio Alarcon has been in the United States since he was 10-years-old. The Mexican is not a legal resident.
"I'm about to graduate from college next year and this is the only country that I know," Alarcon says. "I call this nation and I call this city my home. "
He, like 11 million other undocumented immigrants, had been living in the shadows. But that changed in 2012 when President obama unveiled the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) plan.
Obama used an executive order to allow undocumented immigrants who entered the US before their 16 birthday and before June of 2007 to receive a renewable two-year work permit and an exemption from deportation.
"I was graduating from high school going to college so it was really good to know that I was going to have a work permit and be able to finance my college career," Alarcon says.
Immigration attorney Natalia Renta says it give them "a sense of security that they can work lawfully in the United States and contribute to the United States."
But, that sense of security has turned into fear. Advocates believe the policy could be reversed by Donald Trump after he takes office.
"DACA was an executive order and it wasn't a law passed by Congress and signed into law by the president, the Trump administration could decide to end the program, and of course look into legal challenges to try preventing from that to happen," Renta says. "They would let the employment authorization cards expire, leaving DACA recipients that did have the safety of like, a promise against deportation, and a promise to work lawfully in the US expire."
During the campaign, Trump claimed he would build a wall along the US border and start deportations. However, since the election, he said he would look to deport those with a criminal record. In a recent video that outlined his first 100 days in office, the only mention of immigration was a part where he vowed to "investigate all abuses of visa programs that undercut the American worker."
Since he mad no mention of what he will do with DACA, 750,000 people protected under the program are wondering "what if" and are trying to get their DACA status renewed quickly.