We are shocked, angered, and deeply outraged by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) July 6th directive that starting in the Fall 2020 semester, international students on an F-1 visa will no longer be allowed to remain in or enter the United States if their coursework is completely online. The directive further states that only international students with a hybrid curriculum that includes the minimum number of online credits needed to show normal progress in their degree program may remain in the United States for their studies.
We understand the deep anxiety ICE’s provisions are causing, and I want you all to know that we are doing everything possible to configure a hybrid curriculum for the upcoming academic year that also complies with the University’s health and safety protocols, allowing our international students who wish to complete their studies in attendance in New York City at Columbia to be able to do so. We will also work closely with the University to further understand the implications of ICE’s directive and what we must do to safeguard our international students, who bring so much brilliance and vitality to the School of the Arts, the University, and to the United States. We stand firm with Columbia as our university continues to strongly oppose the current federal government’s restrictive, regressive, and damaging immigration and travel policies, all of which are a continued threat to our international students, our universities, and our country.
I have included President Bollinger’s message as of yesterday afternoon, for those who may not have seen it. His message reinforces Columbia’s commitment to helping international students in every way we can.
Professor of the Arts
Dean of Columbia University School of the Arts