President's Speeches & Writings:

Update regarding U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement guidance

July 10, 2020

This communication was originally sent to students/faculty/staff.

Denison Community,

I wanted to make you aware of a joint statement made by the GLCA Presidents yesterday and signed by Denison.

Earlier this week, guidance was issued by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) with respect to international students and remote learning during the fall semester. The new guidelines require international students with F-1 visas who wish to study in the U.S. to be enrolled at an institution where in-person classes are offered (even if remote learning is also being offered). “International students in the U.S. are permitted to take some courses online, but their entire course load cannot be a fully online one.”

Fortunately, Denison meets that requirement because our course offerings include ample in-person classes, including blended courses with both in-person and remote components). As long as our students are enrolled in some courses with in-person components, the guidelines will not negatively impact them.

Despite not impacting Denison directly, we believe the new guidance is wrong. All students should be able to complete their academic work in the fall in whatever mode of learning this global pandemic requires.

International students are a vital part of U.S. higher education and Denison. We should be doing more to welcome international students to our campuses. The new guidance sends the wrong message to international students and their families about attending college in the United States. As such, we are working through our higher education associations and with our elected officials to ask for the guidelines to be reconsidered. 

We have been and remain deeply committed to our international students, who are vital to the vibrant diversity of our campus and our mission of training leaders for the global community. In particular, The Office of International Student Services (ISS) is working diligently to support and advocate for Denison students, including ensuring that they have accurate information and support them with care as they make their decisions about fall. We are conducting a town hall meeting with all international students and families next week to provide information and answer their questions.

Adam Weinberg
Denison University