Arizona International Students Expected To Be Largely Unaffected By New ICE Rules

By Rocio Hernandez
Published: Tuesday, July 7, 2020 - 8:41pm
Updated: Wednesday, July 8, 2020 - 7:37am

Arizona State University campus
Arizona State University
Arizona State University.

Immigration and Customs Enforcement announced on Monday that international students on F-1 and M-1 visas could put their immigration status at risk if they attend colleges that are fully remote next semester. 

Arizona’s three public universities are planning to offer a combination in-person, hybrid and online classes this fall and because of this Arizona State University and Northern Arizona University don't anticipate that their students will be impacted by this rule. 

"Students attending ASU on an F-1 visa in fall 2020 will continue to participate in immersive, synchronous classroom instruction both in-person and through ASU Sync," said an ASU spokesperson, referring to the university new remote learning method.

"Our innovative hybrid, NAUFlex, is acceptable under the new (Student and Exchange Visitor Program) SEVP fall 2020 guidance for continuing international student attendance at NAU, and continuing international students will be able to remain in the U.S. under this newly released announcement," NAU said in a statement to KJZZ. 

After Thanksgiving, the University of Arizona is planning on allowing students to finish the semester remotely. It's unclear if going remote for part of the semester will affect for UA international students' immigration status. 

"We are working to provide safe on-campus, in person courses for international students that will comply with Student Exchange and Visitor Information System requirements, so that you may remain in country," said Brent White, the university's vice provost for global affairs. 

As some universities are still developing policies that would bring them in line with ICE’s new mandate, the Center for Immigrants’ Rights Clinic at Penn State University released a fact sheet interpreting the guidance and how it may apply in that UA scenario. 

“I read it as not affecting them because the student has spent some time in an in-person or hybrid format," said Shoba Sivaprsad Wadhia, the center’s director.

The UA is holding information sessions on the new guidance next week. 

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