Arlington, VA (Oct. 18, 2017) — The National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC) continues to oppose President Donald Trump’s efforts to limit the ability of foreign nationals to visit the United States as tourists or students. The association welcomes decisions by two federal judges to block the latest version of the president’s travel ban.
NACAC believes all students should have access to educational opportunities and that international educational exchanges benefit not only students but US higher education as well.
Following up on his March executive order, President Trump issued a proclamation in September aimed at restricting access to the United States for certain individuals from eight countries. The president’s ban would make it harder for students from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria, Yemen, Chad, North Korea, and Venezuela to access education in the US.
The order was expected to go into effect today. NACAC remains concerned that the ban threatens to stifle educational, cultural, and related exchanges and will have immediate and long-term financial consequences for the many US high schools and colleges that serve international students.
“We applaud the judges’ orders, which mean—for now—the administration cannot restrict the entry of students to our institutions,” said NACAC President David Burge. “US universities have been feeling the negative effects of the travel ban since it was first issued in March, with fewer students inquiring and applying to our high schools and colleges. Any new policy will only continue the trend.”
The administration’s first immigration order—which sought to ban individuals from seven Muslim-majority countries from entering the US or obtaining visas—was partially blocked by the courts. The latest proclamation would increase the amount of information visa applicants must provide. The practice, commonly referred to as “extreme vetting,” is burdensome for students and others who wish to visit or study in the United States.
“Talented students, regardless of their country of origin or religious affiliation, have a profound impact on American campuses and only serve to make our educational system stronger,” Burge said. “Any policy that limits participation from international students both negatively affects the international students themselves, most hoping for nothing more than a better life, but also reduces the educational value for American students who stand only to gain through a diverse academic experience.”
NACAC strongly supports efforts to ensure that students, and those in the surrounding community, have a safe learning environment. But the association believes the US government, working with its partners around the world, is already able to appropriately screen individuals seeking to study at a US university, making a travel ban unnecessary.
NACAC has a history of opposition to policies or actions that discriminate based on national origin or religion, or could otherwise infringe on fundamental human rights. The association strongly opposes the travel ban and will work in the days and months ahead to encourage retraction of the administration’s order.
The National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC), founded in 1937, is an organization of nearly 16,000 professionals from around the world dedicated to serving students as they make choices about pursuing postsecondary education. NACAC is committed to maintaining high standards that foster ethical and social responsibility among those involved in the transition process, as outlined in the association's Statement of Principles of Good Practice: NACAC’s Code of Ethics and Professional Practices.
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