Statement Concerning the Department of Homeland Security’s Guidelines Pertaining to International Students

I came to this country to pursue graduate degrees, not unlike many of our international students here at UC San Diego. As a recipient of a non-immigrant visa, I understand first-hand the challenges and the benefits associated with studying in the United States as an international student. And now, 38 years since the day I first entered the U.S., I know I learned a great deal from every student, researcher and faculty member I met along the way. I also shared ideas, collaborated on solutions, and taught many colleagues and students as well. From day one, it was a beneficial, two-way exchange. 

We know that diverse perspectives and collaboration leads to creative ideas that drive innovation. At UC San Diego, all of our students and researchers benefit tremendously from a diverse, multi-cultural, multi-ethnic, multi-racial, and multi-lingual population that interacts, learns and grows together. International students play a crucial role in our campus community. Together with students from all over California and the United States, these individuals significantly contribute to UC San Diego’s mission. By bringing the most talented and promising students and scholars to our university—and by working closely with knowledge partners across the globe—we are better able to create a diverse environment in which we collaborate to address society’s most pressing issues. 

We are deeply concerned that the guidance issued yesterday by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) takes a limited approach to a very complex issue, thereby creating uncertainty and insecurity for international students. This guidance undermines the thoughtful approach taken on behalf of students and researchers by UC San Diego and other academic institutions across the nation to plan for continuing academic and research programs while balancing the health and safety challenges caused by a global pandemic.

UC San Diego is actively working with the University of California Office of the President to assess fully how these changes will affect our international students. We will do all we can to ensure that our students can continue their studies without fear of being forced to leave the country mid-way through the academic year. Details on resources and required actions for our students are forthcoming from our International Students & Programs Office (ISPO). 

We support our international students, recognize and appreciate their contributions to our campus community, and are committed to their success.