Campus administrators are carefully assessing President Trump’s revised travel restrictions and how the new executive order issued today might affect international students, scholars and faculty who study, teach and conduct research at the University of Colorado Boulder.
Effective March 16, the new executive order rescinds and replaces an earlier version that was put on hold for review by a federal court. It prohibits the issuance of visas to citizens of Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen for 90 days and bars them from entering the United States over the same three-month period.
In addition, the revised order removes Iraq from the list of nations affected by the travel restrictions; exempts foreign nationals with green cards and valid visas from the six remaining countries; and stops the entry of refugees from around the globe for 120 days.
Approximately 3,000 international students and 750 international scholars, researchers, staff and faculty members from more than 100 countries study, work and conduct research at CU Boulder.
Regardless of how many CU Boulder affiliates the travel ban will affect, the administration’s new immigration and travel policies are creating a climate of uncertainty on college campuses across the country, said Diana Salazar, director of the university’s International Students and Scholar Services (ISSS) and the current chair of the chancellor’s Campus Quick Response Team, a group tasked with tracking and assessing new federal immigration and travel policies and other emerging issues.
Salazar said students from the six countries listed in the travel ban who have valid visas in their passports will continue to be able to travel to and from the United States but should be cautious given the fluid nature of the implementation of past executive orders. The new executive order calls for additional recommendations related to international travel over the course of the next few months, and the campus will continue to monitor and provide updates in the event that additional changes are made, she said.
"Because there is much uncertainty with regard to immigration and travel, supporting our international community is first and foremost for us right now,” Salazar said.
"Our recommendation is that anyone from the countries listed in the new executive order consult with an ISSS adviser before they consider departing the United States for any travel abroad to ensure that they have the appropriate documents needed to re-enter the country. Students and scholars will need time to understand and assess the potential risks given the shifting political situation, and we want people to be able to make informed decisions."
Chancellor Philip P. DiStefano said the university’s primary goal is to ensure that it retains and graduates all of its students—including students from other countries.
"We have international students, scholars and employees in many departments and units all across campus, and we value their participation and leadership in our community. We are honored that they call CU Boulder their professional or academic home," DiStefano said.