I have often been critical of college presidents not standing up for political issues that directly impact our institutions. As waves of protests and condemnations of the executive order took hold over the weekend, another event occurred. College presidents seeing the order as a direct assault on the values of higher education started speaking up. One after another, they condemned the President’s action. Rather than sharing my thoughts, I want to take the opportunity to share the unanimous voices of higher education’s leaders standing up to an attack on the values we hold dear- both as higher education and as a country. The sheer number of responses shows just how united American higher education is in fighting this attack on our values.
Note: I will continue updating this post as additional statements come in. If I missed one that you know about, let me know and I’ll add it. Some statements were quite long so I only included a portion for brevity.
Mark Schlissel, University of Michigan
For generations, the University of Michigan has been known throughout the world as a leading international community of scholars. U-M has admitted international students since the late 1840s, and our first foreign-born faculty member was hired in 1846. Our ability to attract the best students and faculty from around the globe enhances our teaching, learning, research and societal impact and is in part responsible for our standing as a great public research university.
Fostering an environment that promotes education and research at the highest levels is among my most important responsibilities as the University of Michigan’s president. The leadership of the university is committed to protecting the rights and opportunities currently available to all members of our academic community, and to do whatever is possible within the law to continue to identify, recruit, support and retain academic talent, at all levels, from around the world.
Mary Sue Coleman, Association of American Universities
We recognize the importance of a strong visa process to our nation’s security. However, the administration’s new order barring the entry or return of individuals from certain countries is already causing damage and should end as quickly as possible. The order is stranding students who have been approved to study here and are trying to get back to campus, and threatens to disrupt the education and research of many others.
We also urge the Administration, as soon as possible, to make clear to the world that the United States continues to welcome the most talented individuals from all countries to study, teach, and carry out research and scholarship at our universities. It is vital to our economy and the national interest that we continue to attract the best students, scientists, engineers, and scholars. That is why we have worked closely with previous administrations, especially in the wake of 9/11, to ensure our visa system prevents entry by those who wish to harm us, while maintaining the inflow of talent that has contributed so much to our nation.
Other countries have set the goal of surpassing the United States as the global leader in higher education, research, and innovation. Allowing them to replace this country as the prime destination for the most talented students and researchers would cause irreparable damage, and help them to achieve their goal of global leadership
Peter McPherson, Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities
Public research universities are deeply concerned about the administration’s new policy preventing visa and green card holders of seven countries from returning to the U.S. for 90 days. The consequences of this action, along with the ban on refugees, reverberate far beyond the higher education community and are worthy of everyone’s attention. As a public research university association we are keenly aware of the impact this is already having on college campuses throughout the U.S. The most recent figures show that more than 17,000 students from the seven countries that this ban targets studied at U.S. universities during the 2015-16 school year.
The new order is causing significant disruption and hardship to some university students, researchers, faculty, and staff who are citizens of the seven countries targeted and happened to be abroad at the time it was issued. These individuals returned home to visit in compliance with the immigration designation they received, but are now stranded abroad and unable to return to their studies and responsibilities in the U.S. This means that students’ work toward degrees are in question and the ability of faculty to continue teaching or conducting research is uncertain. On a personal level, some of these people are now separated from family members and torn away from the lives they had already legally established in the U.S.
But the impact of this decision goes beyond those immediately impacted. Our nation’s universities are enriched and strengthened by the talent, insight, and culture that international students, faculty, researchers, and staff bring. With appropriate and effective vetting, international students from all countries and of all religions have long been a core part of our campus communities and that should continue uninterrupted. We are also concerned that this decision adds great uncertainty to international students, researchers, and others who might consider coming to our campuses.
The hardship is now clear and, as a matter of fairness and in accord with the values of this nation, the decision that bans these current visa and green card holders from returning for 90 days should be promptly reconsidered.
Muriel Howard, American Association of State Colleges and Universities
The United States has long benefitted from scientific, cultural and economic contributions of international students and scholars. America’s state colleges and universities have been strengthened by the presence of students and faculty from around the globe, including those from the seven countries specifically targeted by the president’s executive order. We share in the collective commitment to protect our national security while at the same time enriching our nation with invaluable contributions from abroad. Accordingly, we respectfully urge the administration to reconsider its recent action.
Hunter Rawlings, Cornell University
President Donald Trump’s recent executive order imposing a 90-day ban on immigrant and nonimmigrant entry to the United States from seven predominantly Muslim nations is deeply troubling and has serious and chilling implications for a number of our students and scholars. It is fundamentally antithetical to Cornell University’s principles.
Ours is a diverse and global university. More than a fifth of our students are from countries outside the U.S. and our students and faculty are involved in programs and partnerships around the world. Over the last few days, we have been in regular contact with our community members who are directly impacted by the executive order, including students on our Ithaca campus; students, postdoctoral fellows, clinical trainees, and faculty at Weill Cornell Medicine in New York City; and students at Weill Cornell Medicine in Qatar. We are offering to each our assistance and unwavering support. Cornell will not compromise its admissions and hiring standards of excellence and will continue to solicit, accept, and process applications from international students from around the world, including from the impacted countries.
Drew Faust, Harvard University
Our robust commitment to internationalism is not an incidental or dispensable accessory. It is integral to all we do, in the laboratory, in the classroom, in the conference hall, in the world. It fuels the capacity of universities to spur innovation, to advance scholarship and scientific discovery, and to help address society’s hardest challenges. It is a crucial ingredient in making American higher education a singular national asset, the destination of choice for countless scholars and students whose contributions serve our nation and our world. Especially at a time of sharp divisions at home and abroad, we must do all we can to sustain the ability of U.S. universities to bring people from around the world to our campuses and to enable people from our campuses to engage the world. Nearly half of the deans of Harvard’s schools are immigrants—from India, China, Northern Ireland, Jamaica, and Iran. Benefiting from the talents and energy, the knowledge and ideas of people from nations around the globe is not just a vital interest of the University; it long has been, and it fully remains, a vital interest of our nation.
As I write, we are still working to understand the concrete implications of the new travel restrictions, and we are following related developments in the courts. But the disruption and disorientation flowing from these restrictions are palpable and distressing. While questions may at this point be far more apparent than answers, the restrictions are already posing barriers to scholars and students seeking to enter the country and are inhibiting others from pursuing important travel abroad, fearful about their ability to return. Amid this widespread doubt and unease, we will continue to insist that policymakers take full account of how fundamentally our universities depend on the ability of people to travel across borders without undue constraint. National security is, of course, an essential element of our nation’s immigration policy. But we are confident those considerations can be fairly addressed while avoiding the large-scale disruption and distress that the new restrictions portend—and while honoring the ideals of openness, nondiscrimination, and opportunity that our universities and our nation hold dear. We urge the administration, the Congress, and the courts to address these concerns without delay.
Jerome Gilbert, Marshall University
Marshall University currently has more than 550 international students from 56 countries. These students are valued and welcomed members of the Marshall family. Their presence adds immeasurable value to our campus by bringing the richness of their cultures and experiences to Marshall and Huntington.
Satish Tripathi, University of Buffalo
UB is an international community. And since our university’s founding in 1846, UB has been enriched by students, faculty and staff from around the world.
Despite current and pending executive actions affecting access to the U.S. by persons from designated countries, UB is a welcoming campus for students, faculty and visitors from across the globe, and is committed to remaining so.
It is important to keep in mind the valuable and far-reaching contributions our international students, faculty and staff make to UB’s research, education and engagement missions. UB’s international community benefits all of us, enhancing the diversity of our community, our global learning opportunities and the richness of our cultural and intellectual life.
Mitch Daniels, Purdue University
The President’s order related to immigration is a bad idea, poorly implemented, and I hope that he will promptly revoke and rethink it. If the idea is to strengthen the protection of Americans against terrorism, there are many far better ways to achieve it.
Glenn McConnell, College of Charleston
While there is uncertainty regarding the impact of this Executive Order, let there be no confusion regarding how the College values our international students, faculty and staff and those who have immigrated to the United States. They are an integral part of the College of Charleston experience, providing diversity of thought, belief and expression and playing a critical role in the free exchange of ideas and cultures – a cornerstone of our educational experience. And there should also be no confusion about the College’s commitment to religious freedom.
John Jenkins, University of Notre Dame
The sweeping, indiscriminate and abrupt character of President Trump’s recent Executive Order halts the work of valued students and colleagues who have already passed a rigorous, post-9/11 review process, are vouched for by the university and have contributed so much to our campuses. If it stands, it will over time diminish the scope and strength of the educational and research efforts of American universities, which have been the source not only of intellectual discovery but of economic innovation for the United States and international understanding for our world; and, above all, it will demean our nation, whose true greatness has been its guiding ideals of fairness, welcome to immigrants, compassion for refugees, respect for religious faith and the courageous refusal to compromise its principles in the face of threats.
We respectfully urge the president to rescind this order.
Elizabeth Stroble, Webster University
We value our international students, faculty and staff. Webster has a long history of embracing the international community, from its earliest days when it accepted two French students after World War I, through today. Currently, Webster has students, faculty and staff representing nationalities of more than 140 nations and six continents. Our international community has strengthened the University’s core values of diversity and inclusion.
John Thrasher, Florida State University
Florida State University is deeply concerned about the administration’s new policy preventing the entry of citizens of seven foreign countries to the United States for the next 90 days. At universities nationwide, confusion and uncertainty are causing disruption and worry among students, researchers, faculty and staff who are citizens of the countries involved in the ban, as well as their colleagues and friends.
We all know that our university has long been enriched and strengthened by the cultural and intellectual diversity these scholars contribute. In the classroom, the laboratory, institutes, centers and colleges, they are conducting vitally important work that adds to the body of knowledge while broadening the educational experience for all FSU students. We appreciate them, and their safety and security will be our highest priority.
Morton Schapiro, Northwestern University
Knowledge knows no borders, and we all benefit greatly from the presence of the talented international students, faculty and staff who are members of the Northwestern community. I sincerely hope that the Administration quickly makes clear that this country still welcomes scholars and students from around the world, just as Northwestern University does, and will continue to do so.
Mark Wrighton, Washington University in St. Louis
I am mindful of the need to maintain national security. But this order has caused adverse effects on our university community and the United States research community as a whole. It is having a very direct, negative impact on specific members of our community and the executive order should be withdrawn.
I strongly support the statement from the Association of American Universities, of which we are a member. In addition to sharing concern about the executive order, we call upon the President and his administration to make clear to the world that the United States continues to welcome the most talented individuals from all countries to teach, study and carry out research and scholarship at our universities. Through the combined AAU efforts, and my own personal outreach to members of Congress, we are making clear our very serious concerns about these issues. If you are motivated to do so, I encourage you to engage in the national conversation and contact your elected officials and other leaders making these decisions to share your views.
I reiterate the sentiment I shared in December. Washington University must be a place where we draw strength through our differences, and where all feel welcomed, respected and included. We value a long tradition of drawing talented people from all around the world to our community, and we must continue to vigorously encourage the open exchange of ideas and perspectives.
Richard Brodhead, Duke University
Duke University is committed to, and is greatly enriched by, the open exchange of students, scholars and ideas from all over the globe. We are deeply concerned about the well-being of students, faculty and staff who may be impacted by the policies that have now been put in place, and will join with the rest of higher education to bring these concerns to the attention of policymakers and the public.
To that end, we want to restate our fundamental commitment to ensuring that all students and faculty can focus on what brought them here in the first place: to get a world-class education and pursue scholarship in an environment that supports them regardless of their background.
Christopher Eisgruber, Princeton University
Princeton’s position on immigration policy issues reflects our conviction that every single person on this campus has benefited from the ability of people to cross borders in search of learning or a better life. That is emphatically true for me. My mother and her family arrived in this country as refugees escaping from a war-torn continent. They would have perished had they been denied visas. My father first came to America as an exchange student from a country that had recently been at war with the United States, and he then studied at Purdue University as a foreign graduate student.
Immigration has been a source of creativity and strength for this country throughout its history. It is indispensable to the mission and the excellence of America’s universities, which enhance this country’s economy, security, and well-being through the students they educate and the ideas they generate. Princeton will continue supporting students, faculty, and staff of all nationalities and faiths, and we will continue making the case for policies that simultaneously respect this nation’s legitimate security interests and allow for the free and vital movement of students and scholars across borders.
Claire Sterk, Emory University
I wholeheartedly share the concerns and insecurity expressed by many of you. While I believe in the need for immigration laws and a strong visa process for national security, I am concerned about the impact that this executive order may have on our faculty, students, and staff.
Richard Myers, Kansas State University
K-State deeply values the contributions of our international family members and regrets the disruption this situation is causing in their lives. As a public research university with global connections, we are concerned about the detrimental effects of this policy on those pursuing academic studies and research. Our immediate task is to explore ways to be supportive of the students and families impacted.
Robert Barchi, Rutgers University
We are not alone in this matter. There are an estimated 17,000 international students at U.S. colleges and universities from the seven countries identified in the executive order. We share the view of many of our peer institutions who have argued strongly that many aspects of the executive order run counter to the academic and social mission of higher education.
Thomas Haas, Grand Valley State University
Grand Valley will continue its long tradition of study abroad and welcoming to our campus students and faculty from other lands. These activities enrich our campus and prepare our graduates to succeed wherever their learning takes them. Engagement with the world is a hallmark of Grand Valley and it has my absolute support; maintaining it is one of my most important duties as your president.
Michael Rao, Virginia Commonwealth University
The international members of our community enrich our academic, research and clinical missions while serving to actualize VCU’s core value of diversity. Our commitment to our international students, faculty, staff and patients is unwavering. We will continue to do everything within the law to support and advocate for the international members of our community.
Eric Barron, Pennsylvania State University
Please know that the University fully supports all members of our academic community. We remain committed to respecting and honoring the dignity of each individual, embracing civil discourse, and fostering a diverse and inclusive community. We recognize and believe strongly that the diversity of faculty, staff and students enriches all of us and enables our mission of research, teaching, service and economic development.
The best part of Penn State is our people — no matter what country they may call home. We support all of you.
Michael Roth, Wesleyan University
Since our very beginnings, our country has been immeasurably strengthened by immigrants. Turning our backs on those in need today is worse than heartless. Since the passage of the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965, discrimination on the basis of national origin has been illegal. The idea of a religious test for immigrants from some parts of the world is reprehensible, and we believe it to be unconstitutional. These are matters that will be resolved in the courts. Meanwhile, Wesleyan University will remain steadfast in our commitment to treat immigrants and refugees with the dignity and respect they deserve. This is what we mean when we say we are a Sanctuary Campus.
Wesleyan is an institution of open-minded inquiry and education, and as such we refuse bigotry and demagoguery. As I’ve written before, “being horrified is not enough.” We must take our revulsion against the politics of fear and scapegoating, and turn it into efforts to create inclusive communities that celebrate diversity while building compassionate solidarity.
Michael McRobbie, University of Indiana
At Indiana University, we embrace openness to the world. This has long been a hallmark of great global universities such as ours that seek to attract the best students, scholars and researchers from every country and champion the cause of greater cultural understanding.
The executive order issued on Friday that bars citizens and refugees from certain countries from entering the U.S. is contrary to the very core of our values as an institution committed to excellence and innovation, a diversity of community and ideas, respect for the dignity of others and engagement in the economic, civic, cultural and social development of our state, our nation and our world.
IU’s educational, research and service missions are inextricably bound with the rest of the world and rooted in a belief in the ever-increasing value of international literacy and experience. This is why we urge the administration to end this executive order, which threatens to disrupt these missions, as quickly as possible. We also would encourage the administration to make it clear to the rest of the world that our nation’s colleges and universities will continue to open their doors to the best and brightest scholars and researchers who, through their teaching, discoveries and innovations, play a vital role in enhancing our nation’s economic competitiveness and prosperity.
Robert Zimmer, University of Chicago
Unnecessary restrictions on the flow of talented scholars and students into the United States damage the University’s capacity to fulfill its highest aspirations in research, education, and impact. This has been an important part of the University’s stance since its inception, and in the past decade we have actively sought to increase the presence on campus of those from around the world. We are committed to articulating the importance of this matter to policy makers, and we are committed to the direct support of those in our own community who may be affected by changes in current immigration policy.
This is a challenging moment around an issue of critical importance for us all. We look forward to working together within the University and with partners outside the University to address the human and policy issues vital to the University’s ability to welcome scholars and students from all nations and backgrounds.
Carol Folt, University of North Carolina
To our more than 3,000 international students, scholars, staff and families – representing more than 100 countries: you are essential to our vibrant Carolina community. We remain fully committed to a diverse and inclusive campus and want all who work and study here to feel welcomed and valued.
John DeGioia, Georgetown University
The implications of this order are significant and concerning. We are an institution that values the contributions of our international students, staff, and faculty, and we are deeply committed to interreligious dialogue and providing a context in which members of all faith backgrounds are welcomed and encouraged to practice their faith.
We have been international since the days of our founding. Georgetown is 228 years old—founded in 1789, eight months before the republic itself. In our first classes, a quarter of our students came from other countries. Our first course catalogues in the 1790s were in three languages. Our international character is integral to our identity as a University, to the free exchange of ideas, and to our ability to support all of our students, staff, and faculty in contributing to our global community.
Our Catholic and Jesuit identity provides the foundation for our lives together. Guided by our mission, we have placed a special emphasis on interreligious dialogue and our openness to different faith traditions and cultures. This includes our efforts to support a diverse and vibrant Muslim community on campus.
In this moment of challenge and uncertainty, we have an ever more urgent responsibility to care for one another, to empathize with those in need, to dedicate our knowledge to service, and to place above all, the betterment of humankind. This is the story of our University, of our nation and our world. Let us be animated by this commitment.
Gregory Fenves, University of Texas
What starts at UT benefits not only the state of Texas, but also our nation and our nation’s leadership role internationally. To achieve our mission at UT, we value a diverse community, a community that includes all of us — students, faculty, and staff members. And as a university of the first class, we attract many of the brightest individuals from around the world.
I am proud to say we have 110 students, faculty members and scholars who are citizens of the seven affected countries — Iran, Iraq, Libya, Syria, Yemen, Somalia and Sudan. The talents that brought them to UT are deeply valued, and their perspectives represent an essential part of the university.
Lawrence Schovanec, Texas Tech University
Texas Tech has more than 3,000 students, faculty and staff from over 100 countries. Each is a valued and welcomed member of our university and community. They contribute to our mission of education and research, our academic stature, and cultural diversity.
Alison Byerly, Lafayette University
As a proud citizen of a country that has long stood as a beacon of hope and freedom across the world, as a Pennsylvania-born resident of a state whose cultural and educational institutions are deeply rooted in traditions of religious tolerance, and as the leader of a college that is named after a foreign-born patriot who risked his life for the cause of liberty in America, I deplore actions that threaten to undermine principles that I cherish.
While political views across our extended community no doubt differ, I hope that we all share a commitment to supporting the rights of students who have come to Lafayette in pursuit of education, and faculty and staff who are committed to helping to provide that education, whatever their religion or nation of origin. My thanks to all of you for your support of our community during this time.
Biddy Martin, Amherst College
We value every member of this community and are committed to doing everything we can within the limits of the law to protect those who will be affected by this order. All of higher education will be weaker for the exclusion of talent and the interruption of education and careers. The society is weakened, too, in ways too numerous to mention here, among them a failure to honor founding principles and a refusal to help those whose lives are on the line through no fault of their own. I feel grief for those at risk, those whose lives have been thrown into chaos and confusion, those who have been separated from their families, those whose religion and nationality have been deemed an inherent risk, and for those in our community and in many other communities who are living with uncertainty and fear about the impact on their lives.
Marc Tessier-Lavigne, Stanford University
As an academic institution with students and scholars from around the world, Stanford values and in fact depends upon the flow of students, educators and researchers across borders. National security and counterterrorism considerations are of course vital to effective immigration policy. But the current situation is causing deeply regrettable alarm and uncertainty for many people who are part of the academic community here in the United States.
David Dawson, Earlham College
This action disrespects the fundamental values essential to Earlham’s character, identity and our basic human values of ethical caring and responsibility and will have harmful consequences for many persons, including many students enrolled at colleges and universities.
Janet Napolitano joined by Chancellors, University of California
We are deeply concerned by the recent executive order that restricts the ability of our students, faculty, staff, and other members of the UC community from certain countries from being able to enter or return to the United States.
While maintaining the security of the nation’s visa system is critical, this executive order is contrary to the values we hold dear as leaders of the University of California. The UC community, like universities across the country, has long been deeply enriched by students, faculty, and scholars from around the world, including the affected countries, coming to study, teach, and research. It is critical that the United States continues to welcome the best students, scholars, scientists, and engineers of all backgrounds and nationalities.
Joanne Berger-Sweeney, Trinity College
What we can say now is that Trinity will continue to support our community members regardless of their religion or country of origin, and we will continue to work to foster an inclusive campus environment in which all students feel welcomed and safe and have equal opportunities to engage in a Trinity education and to succeed.
Leon Botstein, Bard College
I believe that Bard must sustain its commitment to the principle of non-discrimination by reason of race, religion, or national identity. Bard is part of an international community of students and scholars and it will hold fast to attracting and retaining students, faculty, and staff from all over the world.
Bard has a long and proud history as a haven for refugees, first in the 1930s and again after the failed Hungarian Revolution of 1956. It will continue to honor the humanist traditions of higher education, Bard’s own history, and above all the ideals of the United States and the principles of its Declaration of Independence and its Constitution.
Bard will support and protect students without reference to their immigration status. Bard will admit students in a non-discriminatory manner with regard to religion, race, and national origin. Bard supports the BRIDGE Act and will continue to admit and support undocumented students. What the call for “extreme vetting” and the ban on immigration from certain nations mean for colleges and universities is not yet clear. But Bard will join the appropriate inter-institutional efforts to protect individuals dedicated to scholarship and teaching from all nations and religions.
I am an immigrant, a naturalized citizen whose family came stateless to this country. My deep patriotism for America is rooted in that experience. That patriotism is attached to the laws and ideals of the United States.
Our country was not always hospitable to refugees and immigrants. It was essentially closed from the 1920s until the mid 1960s. It turned away refugees from Nazi Europe. We cannot now permit our country to return to the America First isolationism of the 1930s and redefine itself as place of xenophobia, intolerance, and discrimination.
Dennis Hanno, Wheaton College
The diversity of our campus, which includes students from across the US and from more than 70 other countries, is a source of strength. I realize that the shifting national dialogue is causing many to feel more vulnerable and insecure, but you have my commitment that we will pursue every means available to create a secure environment for all.
Wheaton prides itself on its commitment to creating an inclusive campus environment that values the contributions and perspectives of every individual. It is times like this that provide us with the opportunity to build an even stronger community and to serve as a model for other colleges and for society as a whole. My hope is that the anger, confusion and pain created by events like this will result in positive, powerful and respectful dialogue and action on campus and beyond. Let’s join together to support each other and to make Wheaton a safe, secure and welcoming environment for all.
Burns Hargis, Oklahoma State University
Many of our faculty, staff and student come from across the globe. International diversity provides perspectives, experiences and opportunities that enrich the classroom experiences at our university and prepare our students to work in a global community.
Lee Bollinger, Columbia University
At a more fundamental level, this order undermines the nation’s continuing commitment to remain open to the exchange of people and ideas. We must not underestimate the scale of its impact. An estimated 17,000 international students in the U.S. are from the seven nations covered by the entry ban. Scholars planning to travel to the United States for meetings and conferences at our colleges and universities will effectively be barred from attending. If this order stands, there is the certainty of a profound impact on our University community, which is committed to welcoming students, faculty, and staff from around the world, as well as across the nation.
As I have said on many occasions, it is critically important that the University, as such, not take stands on ideological or political issues. Yet it is also true that the University, as an institution in the society, must step forward to object when policies and state action conflict with its fundamental values, and especially when they bespeak purposes and a mentality that are at odds with our basic mission. This is such a case.
It is important to remind ourselves that the United States has not, except in episodes of national shame, excluded individuals from elsewhere in the world because of their religious or political beliefs. We have learned that generalized fears of threats to our security do not justify exceptions to our founding ideals. There are many powerful and self-evident reasons not to abandon these core values, but among them is the fact that invidious discrimination often adds fuel to deeply harmful stereotypes and hostility affecting our own citizens.
It is with regret that I have to send this communication.
Ronald Daniels, Johns Hopkins University
Johns Hopkins University is unequivocally committed to supporting students, faculty, and staff affected by the executive order. These members of our university community are important to our academic family and to our mission of education, discovery, and service.
Patrick Gallagher, University of Pittsburgh
The University of Pittsburgh has always viewed education and researchers a global enterprise–one that is a vital part of our mission. Because of this, our vibrant community includes students, faculty, visiting scholars, family members, and staff with ties to the countries covered by Friday’s executive order.
Nancy Zimpher, State University of New York
The State University of New York enrolls approximately 22,140 international students from 180 countries, including 320 students from the seven countries affected by the current ban on travel. SUNY is reviewing President Trump’s Executive Order and surveying its campuses to determine the impact it may have on our students, faculty, and staff both abroad and at home on our 64 college and university campuses.
As always, our commitments to diversity, equity, and inclusion are unwavering. Our founding principles and support for undocumented students, restated by the SUNY Board of Trustees at its meeting last week, continue to guide our actions as we review and react to new federal mandates with regard to immigration.
David Boren, University of Oklahoma
The University affirms its support for all faculty, staff and students who may be affected by these developments. I especially want to reiterate our strong support for our international students, who are valued members of our university family. Bringing international students to study in our country helps build lasting friendships with people all around the world. Those who study in our country become persuasive and articulate friends of the United States when they return to their home countries. When we reduce the opportunities for young people to come to America to take advantage of the educational opportunities here, we not only harm them, but we also damage the image and inspiration of America around the world.
Wallace Loh, University of Maryland
The potential for negatively impacting the educational and research missions of our campus is significant. We are currently assessing how this executive order may affect the students and scholars at our campus who come from these countries.
In the meantime, I join my colleagues from across the U.S. in an emphatic message of support for them and their families. It is in America’s national interest that we continue to welcome talented individuals of all nations to study, teach, and do research here and retain America’s global leadership in higher education.
Gerard Clancy, University of Tulsa
Learning thrives when scholars around the world are free to collaborate. As an academic community that is home to 1,047 students from 74 other nations, The University of Tulsa is troubled by President Trump’s Jan. 27 executive order suspending visas for travelers from seven nations, including some nations that are home to current TU students. The university understands and strongly supports the imperatives of national security, but it also cautions against measures that are overly broad and that carry unconsidered consequences that harm scholarship, commerce, individuals and families and the ideals of opportunity that have traditionally made America great.
TU is rich in diversity, and our commitment to humanity is embedded into our mission, which will not be compromised. This is why, today – and every day that follows – we stand together as one family, respectful, united and strong.
Hank Foley, University of Missouri
In the days ahead, we will continue to work closely with our federal and state senators and representatives on this matter. We will continue to emphasize the central role our international community plays at MU, our state’s premier public research university. Our success depends on your intellectual capital and drive, and our future depends on your excellent teaching and high-level research in all disciplines, including the scientific, medical and technological fields that fuel human progress. We could not do what we do without you. We will make clear to our representatives the value of your place here and the importance of your roles in our enterprise.
Harvey Stenger, Binghamton University
We know that these are difficult circumstances, leaving many of us concerned. Binghamton University remains committed to the continued success of all of our students, regardless of religious belief, country of birth or citizenship, and we are here to provide all students and faculty with support through this difficult time.
Roderick McDavis, Ohio University
Ohio University is committed to promoting an atmosphere where understanding and acceptance of cultural and ethnic differences are guaranteed. A climate that represents and embraces different cultures enhances the University’s ability to provide all of its students with the experiences necessary to successfully compete and achieve in an increasingly diverse and complex society.
Michael Schill, University of Oregon
The United States has historically attracted and welcomed people from around the globe who helped build our nation, made scientific discoveries, contributed to the arts, fueled our economy, and created our diverse civic culture. Our nation’s first president, George Washington, observed that the “bosom of America is open to receive not only the opulent and respected stranger, but the oppressed and persecuted of all nations and religions; whom we shall welcome to a participation of all our rights and privileges…” Part of the University of Oregon’s mission, as a public institution, is to continue to support this tradition by bringing the best and the brightest here to be part of a rich and vibrant community of scholars.
Academic excellence and global engagement go hand in hand at the UO. By continuing our long history of welcoming eager, talented scholars from many countries, we draw global perspectives into our community and enrich the educational experience. By sending 25 percent of every graduating class to study abroad or participate in overseas internships, we widen our world view, develop cross-cultural skills, and prepare students for a global economy.
We are troubled by the decision of the new US administration to begin a process of closing our borders by indefinitely banning refugees from Syria, placing a 120-day ban on refugees from all over the world, blocking new visas from seven predominantly Muslim countries (Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen) for 90 days, and signaling a religious test for admittance of new refugees. The UO is proudly committed to welcoming talented individuals from all countries to study, teach, and carry out research and scholarship on our campus.
William Leahy, Boston College
This Order undermines a key strength of our higher education system, as it turns away talented faculty and students who seek to immigrate to the United States. For decades, colleges and universities in America have benefited from such individuals, and our nation has enjoyed the fruits of having the world’s greatest post-secondary education system. The Order is also contrary to American understandings of this nation’s role as a refuge and its place as a society that does not discriminate on the basis of religion or national origin.
This decision also conflicts with the religious and educational heritage, beliefs, and values of Boston College. The Judeo-Christian faith tradition emphasizes the necessity of caring for strangers and those in need. As Pope Francis recently reminded us, “It’s hypocrisy to call yourself a Christian and chase away a refugee or someone seeking help, someone who is hungry or thirsty, toss out someone who is in need of my help. . . In putting ourselves at the service of the neediest, we will experience that we are already united; it is God’s mercy that unites us.”
Boston College was founded in 1863 to educate the children of immigrants and, like our nation, has gained so much from the presence and contributions of faculty, students, and staff born in other countries.
Stephen Ainlay, Union College
More than 200 years ago, Union was founded as one of the country’s first non-sectarian colleges, with the belief that diversity made for a better educational experience. Two centuries later, we are more committed than ever to that belief. Union College remains a welcoming educational environment where students, faculty, and staff from diverse backgrounds and faiths thrive. Indeed, all are valued members of this community and our two most recent strategic plans have confirmed this institutional commitment. We also recognize that we are part of a larger international community of scholars, and are understandably concerned about any policies that make the exchange of ideas within and across that community more difficult.
Sharon Gaber, University of Toledo
The University of Toledo welcomes people of all racial, ethnic, cultural, socioeconomic, national and international backgrounds. Diversity is a core value of the University. We believe our diversity makes us stronger, and we work hard to create an environment of inclusion.
Jeffrey Vitter, University of Mississippi
As a public international research institution of higher education, the University of Mississippi is focused upon education and the success of our students in a global society. We are a community of scholars committed to fostering a diverse environment, and we benefit greatly from a strong international and multicultural presence.
One of our top priorities is a safe and welcoming environment for all our students, faculty, staff, and visitors. However, we recognize that for many in our community, there is significant anxiety, fear, and uncertainty related to recent Presidential Executive Orders.
Kent Fuchs, University of Florida
Richard Lifton, Rockefeller University
We at Rockefeller University, a world-renowned center for research in the biomedical sciences, oppose both the spirit and the letter of the ill-conceived executive order issued January 27 by U.S. president Donald J. Trump to restrict immigration from seven Muslim-majority nations. We call on our elected officials do everything within their power to oppose its implementation and vigorously defend the American values that it undermines.
Our society has benefited, and continues to benefit enormously from science and technology arising from the world’s best and brightest coming to the U.S. for training in our universities and staying to develop technologies that have advanced our economy and transformed the world. The President’s executive order sends a chilling message to all current and prospective trainees and scientists abroad and has an immediate impact on the trainees and faculty from the proscribed countries as well as their families. As a nation, we are dishonoring the contract we made with all of these individuals when we welcomed them to the U.S.
Joseph McShane, Fordham University
Phil Hanlon, Dartmouth College
Dartmouth is a global institution. This community is home to more than 900 international students and more than 200 international faculty, scholars, and staff. Dartmouth’s commitment to the free and open exchange of ideas, global research, and education manifests itself in dozens of partnerships and in international study and exchange programs. Our engagement with the full human diversity of backgrounds, perspectives, and experiences is critical—to both the strength of the Dartmouth community and the effectiveness of Dartmouth’s learning and leadership. We recognize, value, and celebrate the essential contributions of our international students and scholars.
Beverly Warren, Kent State University
The order, which suspends visas for nationals of Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen, has the potential to have a powerfully negative impact on our global community and our climate of inclusion and care. I am deeply troubled by this situation.
Kent State University’s rich history and our promising future are intertwined with our vision for deep and meaningful global engagement. Our value for diversity of culture, beliefs, identity and thought energizes our transformational mission.
Richard Englert, Temple University
Temple prides itself on being a community of diverse scholars, many of whom come to us from foreign nations. We are committed to enabling our faculty, students and visitors—both from the U.S. and from locations around the globe—to contribute to the vitality of the education we provide and the role we play in the local, regional and global economy. We embrace diversity as integral to our mission of education and discovery. Temple is a better university because of this diversity.
Leo Lambert, Elon University
Elon University is working closely with the broader higher education community this spring on other immigration-related concerns. I am among more than 600 college and university presidents who have signed a statement supporting the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, which makes higher education possible for undocumented immigrant students. In addition, this Tuesday I will join a delegation of North Carolina university leaders in Washington, D.C., to meet with the state’s senators and congressional representatives and to voice our views about U.S. immigration policies and specifically how they impact higher education.
As you encounter international students and scholars on campus this week, I hope you will offer words of encouragement, support, and respect. My four grandparents emigrated to this nation a century ago with little formal education and unable to speak a word of English. Our family is but one example of how this great nation has helped transform the lives of millions of immigrants. I ask that members of the Elon community hold high the light of generosity and compassion and drive out fear.
Ron Liebowitz, Brandeis University
The United States has always been a beacon of education, welcoming scholars from around the world to study, teach, and conduct research. The rich academic environment in Greater Boston and on our campus would be far poorer without the immeasurable contributions international scholars make.
This is why Brandeis joins with academic institutions across the country in voicing our deep concern and dismay about the U.S. administration’s new executive order restricting people from certain countries from entering or returning to the United States. There are already reports that this order has begun to disrupt students, faculty, and staff from traveling for their studies, work, or research.
Robert Brown, Boston University
We believe this Executive Order is fundamentally inconsistent with the values that are the bedrock of Boston University and, indeed, of our pluralistic, welcoming society. The Executive Order diminishes our nation as a beacon for freedom and opportunity. As an academic community, we must stand together to support each other at this time of uncertainty and use a clear voice to affirm our principles and voice our deep concern.
Taylor Reveley, College of William and Mary
William & Mary was born an international university in London, England on February 8, 1693, created by one monarch who was Dutch and the other who was English. Until the American Revolution, all William & Mary professors came from abroad. We are now very much an international university that highly values and welcomes people from around the world. Well over 1,000 students, scholars, faculty and family members from more than 65 countries are part of our community, including some on the executive order’s list. As is true for us all, our international people who are committed to learning and serving the greater good are warmly welcome at William & Mary, regardless of nationality, religion, or any such characteristic.
No one knows how this executive order will play out politically and legally. Already one federal judge has temporarily blocked the enforcement of some of its aspects. But so far as William & Mary is concerned, we will continue to welcome and support our international people, and keep them informed, to the best of our abilities.
Wim Wiesel, Portland State University
At PSU, our international students provide cultural and academic contributions that are integral to our mission and enrich the campus life of Oregon and domestic students. As I said in declaring PSU a sanctuary campus, we have a responsibility to do all we can to make all of our students feel safe and supported regardless of their religion, national origin or immigration status.
John Fry, Drexel University
As evidenced by statements issued across the landscape of American higher education, such a blanket ban is antithetical to many of the values we cherish. Drexel believes in inclusion and equality, and we are committed to celebrating and recognizing the fruits of diversity and global engagement.
We also know that some of our students and colleagues not only are anxious about the impact of this order on their lives, studies and research, but are also shaken and hurt, knowing that this country has singled them out – and their families, home countries, religions, and the like – for seemingly discriminatory treatment.
Andrew Hamilton, New York University
As an immigrant to this country, a former green card holder, and now a citizen of the United States, I have a heavy heart this morning as I watch the events unfolding at our nation’s borders and at airports abroad. The dreams and aspirations of many, including some of our own students’, are at risk of being disrupted before they have begun. On the heels of this sudden federal government order banning entry into the U.S. from certain countries, which has frightened many in our University community and left them feeling uncertain, I want you to know about the steps we are taking to help our students and scholars from those nations.As far as NYU is concerned, these are members in good standing of our academic community, no different from anyone else. NYU believes in the free movement of ideas and, though it is governments that control borders, we also believe in the accompanying free movement of people in pursuit of their academic work. We want the group of NYU colleagues and peers affected by this order to know that the University supports them. Their ability to carry on with their studies and their research, their ability to be present on our campus and participate fully and confidently in University life, and their welfare are foremost among NYU’s concerns.
As a scientist who studied and worked in four countries before becoming a citizen of the U.S., I know how important it is to be able to move across borders in peaceful pursuit of one’s scholarship. I know, too, more than most given my background and my field, how much goodwill the U.S. earns for itself through the openness of its education system and how widely those who study here can spread American values. And I know, as well, that these developments are not just a matter of disrupted educational plans or lost opportunities or even damage to the academic enterprise; beyond all that, this order harms one of the most admired and cherished of American principles — religious non-discrimination itself.
In the days to come, let us remain true to our community’s values and adamant about supporting and making feel valued and welcome those whose status has been thrown into question by changes in government policy. Let us try to ease their anxieties and their burdens by making sure they know they are among friends who are committed to helping them.
Richard Locke, Brown University
One of Brown’s greatest strengths is our diverse, global community. We value the more than 2,000 international students and scholars who are essential to our University, and the ideas, experiences and perspectives they bring are critical to our capacity to engage in teaching, research and service with excellence and distinction. We remain unwavering in our commitment to attract the most talented and promising students and scholars from all countries of origin, cultures, races, religions, identities and experiences, and to cultivating an environment that ensures the free exchange of ideas and advancement of knowledge.
Lou Anna Simon, Michigan State University
President Trump’s executive order on immigration is deeply concerning as it runs counter to the global nature of our communities and our nation. At MSU, our core values are quality, inclusiveness, and connectivity, and this action is an impediment to each. I am keenly aware of the need to address genuine risks to our nation but this order, and the manner it was implemented, is not the best approach. I join my AAU colleagues and other higher education leaders in expressing our concerns regarding the collateral damage caused by this action and calling for a quick end to the order. We must protect our borders, but we also must ensure we do not stem the flow of people of goodwill who come and work to make this nation better. Our students and scholars come from around the world to become Spartans, and then return to the world to make it better. We must not allow fear to change the nature of who we are.
Timothy Snyder, Loyola Marymount University
Members of our LMU family are persons for and with others; affiliating them with terrorists violates their dignity, along with what has made and continues to make America great. In my November 18 message, I reaffirmed that “our mission and our commitment to the dignity of all persons are pillars on which we rely.” I join educators and citizens nationwide and oppose an order that limits our ability to fulfill LMU’s educational mission in a global context and endangers the freedom of movement for the students, faculty, and scholars who vitally enrich our diverse and inclusive academic community, while also separating many of them from beloved, supporting family members. I applaud the statement from the Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities, among others, who condemn this executive action. Driven by our Catholic, Jesuit, and Marymount values, we stand unequivocally in support of our students, regardless of nationality, religion, citizenship, and/or documentation status.
Teresa Sullivan, University of Virginia
Beyond our concern for individual students, faculty, and staff at UVA who are affected by the executive order, we are concerned about the larger effect this and related actions may have on American universities, including UVA, as we seek to expose students to international experiences. Being a great university in the 21st century means being a global university, and our entire University community is enriched and enlightened by interacting with teachers and students from other nations. Providing these experiences is an investment in the future as we seek to build international cooperation and peace. Higher education leaders around the world continue to emulate America’s colleges and universities because of the excellence we have achieved in teaching, research, and innovation, and an essential element of that excellence is our openness to people from other nations. Our University continues to enunciate values that support the bedrock principles of individual freedom, including freedom of expression and freedom of religion.
David Angel, Clark University
Clark University will join with professional associations and other groups in condemning these unwelcome and counter-productive restrictions on entry to the United States by students and scholars. These restrictions negatively impact our core mission of scholarship and teaching, and undermine our capacity to learn from each other within a diverse and global community.
Randy Woodson, North Carolina State University
At NC State, across the UNC System and throughout the United States, our international students, faculty and staff are critically important and extremely valuable members of our higher education communities. Our universities are daily enriched and strengthened by the talent, insight and culture that international students, faculty and staff bring to our campuses.
To all of our international students, especially those from the countries identified in the Executive Order, please know you are a welcome and valued part of the NC State Community. We encourage you to purposefully and passionately continue pursuing your educational dreams and contributing to the scholarship that embodies our think and do mantra. Also, please don’t hesitate to connect with advisors, counselors, professors or any of the many caring people at NC State who are here to provide support and help you be successful.
Susan Herbst, University of Connecticut
The University of Connecticut is a community of scholars that is home to students, faculty, and staff from across the nation and the globe. Our large and diverse population – including our international students – is one of our greatest strengths as a top research university. Our diversity is indeed central the rich nature of campus life and the excellent education we offer.
Matthew Wilson, University of Akron
The University of Akron is fully committed to supporting all members of its University family. Without hesitation, this commitment extends to all of our international students, scholars, researchers, and faculty, whose unique contributions enrich the UA experience for everyone, and who positively contribute to our society as a whole.
As we have unequivocally stated in the past, The University of Akron strongly values inclusion, diversity, mutual respect, equal opportunity, intellectual liberty, free speech, fearless inquiry, privacy, and safety. We will resolutely continue to uphold and promote these values across campus, and will work tirelessly to build bridges and promote values of inclusion within our society.
Philip Glotzbach, Skidmore College
We reaffirm Skidmore’s membership in the international community of scholars, educators, and students within colleges and universities across our nation and throughout the world. It is our priority to foster in our students, as fundamental aspects of their liberal education, both intercultural awareness and global understanding. We actively recruit students from across the world, and we actively encourage all of our students to study abroad. It is clear that educated persons today must understand the myriad ways the countries and peoples of the world are increasingly interconnected and share a basic humanity, interrelated interests, and ultimately a common fate.
In times of difficulty, the Skidmore community comes together to support one another and to reach out, especially, to members who are in distress. This is a moment when we need to show solidarity with all our international students, faculty members, and staff members – especially those from countries affected by these recent developments. Personal expressions of care and concern can go a long way to reassure people that they are valued and, above all, that they are not alone.
Peyton Helm, University of Massachusetts – Dartmouth
Now that our colleagues are safe, we want to be clear that we believe the executive order does nothing to make our country safer and represents a shameful ignorance of and indifference to the values that have traditionally made America a beacon of liberty and hope. This executive order is, furthermore, shockingly oblivious to the fundamental tenets of intellectual and academic freedom, which are enriched – not endangered – by international collaboration. As UMass President Marty Meehan said in a statement earlier today, “we are honored that …international students and scholars choose UMass. They enrich our campuses and communities by providing a fullness of perspectives that helps fulfill our mission of research and public service….”
Terry King, Ball State University
It is important to restate that we are committed to our inclusive environment, and remain very supportive of all of our students, especially international students and faculty who might feel particularly vulnerable at this time. We will continue to closely follow developments and provide appropriate support and assistance.
Marty Meehan, University of Massachusetts
The University of Massachusetts, comprising 100,000 students, faculty and staff, is an international research university that extends the promise of American public higher education to thousands of international students and attracts faculty members from across the globe.
We are honored that these international students and scholars choose UMass. They enrich our campuses and communities by providing a fullness of perspectives that helps fulfill our mission of research and public service benefiting the Commonwealth.
We are deeply disheartened by this alarming action that has violated the rights of members of the UMass community and many others. This is not the country we promised to them when we invited them to study, teach and conduct research here.
Mark Heckler, Valparaiso University
Valparaiso University is constituted by people of different backgrounds and beliefs in dialogue with one another in the common pursuit of Truth. Those of us who have chosen to link our destinies with this place — whether faculty, students, alumni, staff, or friends — value, respect, invite, and welcome a wide array of opinions, beliefs, and cultural practices. This, we believe, is fundamental to our truth-seeking enterprise. Therefore, we are called to dialogue across our differences — even when those differences may be irreconcilable.
As an institution of faith and higher learning rooted in the Christian intellectual tradition, we take Jesus’ words from Matthew 25 to heart when he says, “I was a stranger and you invited me in … Truly I tell you, whatever you do for the least of these brothers and sisters, you do for me.” Similarly, the Quran encourages adherents of Islam to “do good — to parents, kinsfolk, orphans, those in need, neighbors who are near, neighbors who are strangers, the companion by your side, the wayfarer (you meet).” — Q:4:36
Freeman Hrabowski, University of Maryland – Baltimore County
While this recent executive order particularly impacts community members from a select set of countries, we are deeply concerned that it will have a chilling effect on higher education and research broadly. It challenges UMBC’s culture of inclusive excellence, and we will work closely with campus shared governance groups to advocate for our central values in the weeks and months ahead.
John Sygielski, Harrisburg Area Community College
As HACC’s president, I feel compelled to, once again, affirm our support to every member of our College community. Our collective commitment to the success of each of our students is more critical today than it has ever been. Providing an environment that is characterized by integrity, collegiality, excellence and trust will remain the bedrock of our institution.
Over the past few days, there have been executive orders issued that suspend admissions into the United States of refugees, immigrants and citizens of seven majority-Muslim nations. The uncertainty of what will come of these executive actions has the potential to create an environment of hostility, negativity and fear.
Whether you were born in the United States or you are one of HACC’s nearly 300 international students who represent more than 60 countries, the central mission of the College – to create opportunities and transform lives to shape the future together – applies to each of you equally. You are right where you belong – at HACC.
Bernadette Gray-Little, University of Kansas
As a flagship research university, KU is committed to the open exchange of students, scholars and ideas from across the world. Moreover, we are deeply concerned about the well-being of KU students, faculty and staff who may be affected by the new federal restrictions on immigration. For these reasons, we will work with our colleagues throughout higher education to raise these concerns to policymakers.
This state and nation were settled by immigrants, and immigrants continue to make immeasurable contributions to our society. Moreover, I want to reiterate that accessibility, diversity of thought, and the free and open exchange of ideas remain core values of the University of Kansas. That will never change, and we will continue our work to advance these values. And we will continue to let scholars around the world know this: No matter your country of origin, the color of your skin, your religious beliefs, gender, sexual orientation or political leaning – you belong at the University of Kansas, and we value the contributions you make to our community.
Adam Falk, Williams College
The president’s order is inconsistent with Williams’ essential values. It conflicts with our non-discrimination policy, which forbids discrimination on the basis of national origin, religion, and other identity attributes. On Saturday night a federal judge issued a stay on deportations under the order, and a number of organizations and individuals have announced plans to challenge the order’s constitutionality in the courts.
This is a distressing time, but Williams prepares us for moments when moral courage is required. We can—and must—show the world we’re capable of something greater and nobler than fear.
Pat McGuire, Trinity Washington University
What the president of the United States is doing is an offense against our moral values, against any reasonable idea of social justice, and lawyers and judges will most likely prove these actions to be illegal and unconstitutional as well. Pope Francis, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, numerous individual bishops and religious leaders of all faiths have condemned the president’s orders that ban and threaten to deport refugees and immigrants from certain countries. Courageous judges have issued stays and temporary injunctions against the executive order on immigration, but sadly, many people already en route are trapped in a grotesque Kafkaesque nightmare of airport detention, interrogation, deprivation of basic human needs like restrooms and water, and shameful treatment by our own federal agents. Any notion that this executive order will make our nation safer is preposterous; in fact, this action inflames all those already disposed to hatred, and encourages previously neutral citizens of the world to move against the United States.
For 120 years, Trinity has proclaimed a mission rooted in the Catholic faith teachings on Gospel social justice. These teachings demand respect for human life and dignity, solidarity with our brothers and sisters in need, responsible participation in civic life, and service to the most vulnerable in our society who are impoverished and oppressed. Social justice demands that we not remain silent in the face of immoral political actions. The Sisters of Notre Dame who founded Trinity and who still impart their moral influence to us would expect no less than our vigorous defense of social justice principles in the current time.
Ann Weaver Hart, University of Arizona
The University of Arizona community has serious concerns about provisions of the January 27, 2017 Executive Order suspending nonimmigrant and immigrant visas from specific countries and suspending the United States’ refugee program.
We have also heard from University of Arizona students who are afraid to travel abroad, despite the legality of their visas, and we are deeply concerned for the wellbeing and treatment of our foreign students, scholars, researchers, and professors. This approach violates the principles on which international university communities of thought, learning, and research are based and will jeopardize the very mission and purpose of the university.
Ken Gormley, Duquesne University
As a university founded by priests from distant countries, dedicated to educating immigrant Pittsburgh steel mill workers and their families, Duquesne has always embraced diversity and has valued the significant contributions immigrants have made to our society. Indeed, our campus community has consistently been enriched by students, faculty and community members from foreign nations. Their achievements in research, medicine, technology, law and education not only have benefitted Duquesne University since its founding, but they have also strengthened the region, the nation and the world.
Along with others across the country in the academic and higher education communities, and those committed to advancing social justice world-wide, we express deep concern regarding this executive order. As a Catholic, Spiritan institution with a long history of supporting the needs of the underserved including refugees and immigrants – not just in Pittsburgh but within our global community – we support a reasonable approach to immigration that is not based upon fear or hate, does not discriminate and does not cause harm to individuals, families or employers.
John Bravman, Bucknell University
Since admitting our first international student in 1858 – 19-year-old Maung Shaw Loo of Burma, now known as Myanmar – we have benefited from and greatly valued the unique perspectives and experiences that our international students and employees bring to campus. Bucknell will continue to extend its full support to its international students and colleagues, and I will stand with other leaders across higher education who seek to oppose this EO’s overreaching measures which are antithetical to our community’s values and, more broadly, our mission as an institution of higher learning.
The application of such limitations to members of our own community – and of communities across the country – is deeply distressing. We will stand united against acts that impede our commitment to inclusivity and, further, will push for decisions that reflect community and compassion.
Kerry Healey, Babson College
This serious challenge for some members of our community impacts us all in that it threatens the core values we cherish: integrity, innovation, collaboration, excellence, and in particular, diversity. These values are essential to making the Babson College experience a truly transformative one for all who study, teach or work here. I hope that, as we work to support and assist our community members whose lives have been upended by this new U.S. policy, we will reflect on our great blessings, core values, and the importance of academic freedom, and that these reflections will encourage us to model for our governments constructive cross-border collaboration to advance peace, prosperity and tolerance. Our commitment to global academic engagement and to empowering entrepreneurs everywhere to create positive social and economic change in their communities is unshakable and transcends borders and shifting political climates. And we will do everything in our power to ensure Babson College continues to bring together students, faculty, and staff from all backgrounds – including those from the most politically and culturally polarized nations. Together, we will help build a better world for ourselves and for future generations.
Carol Quillen, Davidson College
Davidson College gains strength from our diversity, including diversity of faiths, backgrounds and nationalities. We value each member of our college family, we stand in solidarity with the most vulnerable among us, and we will do everything we can within the limits of the law to protect those who are or might be affected by this Executive Order. We do not share immigration status without a subpoena, warrant or court order.
My friend and former classmate David Brooks wrote in a recent column, “We have a word for people who are dominated by fear. We call them cowards.” At Davidson, we gain unshakable courage from the foundational imperatives of the college’s faith heritage, from the power of our primary purpose, and from our shared culture of integrity, respect and compassion. Our loyalty extends to the whole of humanity, we recognize the dignity and worth of each person and we dedicate ourselves to the quest for truth. I am grateful beyond measure to each of you for sustaining and nurturing this special place as we work together for a more just, more humane world.
Mark Keenum, Mississippi State University
Mississippi State University is Mississippi’s leading research university. MSU’s research prowess has attracted a significant number of international students enrolled in both graduate and undergraduate studies – representing 88 countries. The quality of our research has also attracted leading faculty members and researchers from across the global community of scholars.
MSU’s international and multicultural students, faculty, and researchers represent a very significant positive economic impact on the state. More than that, their presence at MSU enhances every aspect of the university community. We value and appreciate all members of the MSU community.
As I have stated on numerous occasions, MSU’s core values of diversity, inclusion, tolerance, and safety for all – regardless their country of origin – do not waver or change.
Stuart Bell, University of Alabama
Our state and our nation have benefited immensely from the global intellect and engagement offered through our institutions of higher education. Our international faculty, students and researchers provide quantifiable value to all of us through their respective fields, impacting our lives in countless ways – from health care and technology invention, to culture and the arts, and to our economy.
The University of Alabama reaffirms that we welcome and value our community from across the globe. We are offering support to our international faculty, students and researchers for their continued success and well-being in light of the recent Executive Order.
Lesley Hallick, Pacific University
In alignment with our university mission to inspire our students to think, care, create and pursue justice in our world, the university administration remains especially committed to those who feel vulnerable, underrepresented and underserved. Pacific University supports students, staff and faculty regardless of immigration status. As we move forward during these uncertain times, please know that the administration stands behind those of you directly impacted by this, as well as anyone else who may feel vulnerable or compromised. Every person’s heritage and personal attributes are critical to shaping the university’s culture.
John Garvey, Catholic University of America
We can say with certainty that we will operate the University by welcoming all people “in search of the security and the means of livelihood which they cannot find in their country of origin” (Catechism of the Catholic Church 2241).
We hope the newly elected administration will find a way to promote the common good of our citizens, including our national security, without departing from our nation’s great tradition of welcoming persons of good will who seek to make a better life here.
Greg Gunderson, Park University
At Park University, we are fortunate to be able to welcome students from all over the world. We value the diversity that international students bring to our classrooms, to our everyday discussions and to our day-to-day living. We know that our educational experiences are enriched when they are infused with the perspectives of people who have experienced life in other parts of the world. We treasure the global network of friendships that begin at Park University, not only on a personal level, but within the broader context that progress toward peace is made when we feel connected to one another as human beings. Park University’s 141-year commitment to put students’ needs first remains firm.
James Milliken, City University of New York
While I understand it is the responsibility of the administration to keep our country safe, I believe that this Executive Order is inconsistent with the values of openness and inclusiveness that have made CUNY—and our country—great. Those of us who disagree with this policy should urge our elected leaders to change it. In the meantime, we will hold to the values that have been a source of strength at CUNY for 170 years, and we will offer legal assistance to affected members of the CUNY community who need it, through CUNY Citizenship Now, CUNY CLEAR, and other means.
There are few institutions that have done more to help this country benefit from immigration than The City University of New York. Today, almost 40 percent of our undergraduates were born in another country, and we are all the beneficiaries of their talent and ambition.
David Finegold, Chatham University
Our country was founded as a nation of immigrants, and embracing global education and “respect for diversity of culture” is a core part of Chatham’s mission. I join with the many other leaders of higher education, business and technology companies, and religious denominations who have questioned this decision and signal our support for the value that international students, faculty, and visitors have brought to our communities. We share the desire for our country to develop an immigration policy that balances protecting national security while avoiding discrimination against individuals and harming our nation’s industries, including higher education.
MaryAnn Baenninger, Drew University
I state here in the strongest words possible that Drew University does not and will not ever discriminate against someone because of her or his religion, race, country of national origin, gender identity, or sexual orientation. In fact, the categorical reverse is true—this community is enriched and made whole by its diversity. This is a community of love, safety, and support. As its leader, I will do everything within my abilities to ensure that this remains true, even in the face of challenges like the ones presented in the executive order.
As a community of learners, Drew University is very attentive to the deep concerns and fears of its members and is firmly committed to the safety and protection of all of our community members, including non-U.S. citizens who hold green cards or appropriate visas for their current status as students, faculty, and staff. Our intent is to ensure that students’ opportunity to learn, and faculty and staff members’ pursuit of their work and scholarship in the United States and affected countries remains uninterrupted.
Jack Hawkins, Troy University
In light of recent actions regarding entry into the United States, we want to reaffirm Troy University’s commitment to the international community.
As Alabama’s International University, we are committed to learn together as a university community, to grow in understanding, and to build opportunities for all of our students. We uphold a thousand-year tradition of universities where students travel to other lands seeking high-quality education. If you understand people unlike yourself – people from other cultures, speaking different languages – then you can develop an appreciation for those people on a personal level. At that point, true and lasting relationships can develop.
Tony Monaco, Tufts University
We are deeply concerned about the impact of this Executive Order. We take great pride in the global nature of our community and have always embraced and valued our international members from around the world. They are our colleagues and friends. Our community and the world are better places because of what we learn and create together. Let me assure you that will not change. We remain committed to protecting the international members of our Tufts community, regardless of national origin, religion or citizenship status. Treating all members of our community with respect is a fundamental principle of our university. Now more than ever we must adhere to that core value.
Richard Joel, Yeshiva University
There is continuing turmoil regarding US immigration policy. Yeshiva University is unwavering in its support of religious rights and societal values. Ensuring spiritual and personal freedoms are fundamental to the country, our community and our university.
Elizabeth Davis, Furman University
I cannot emphasize strongly enough that the university fully supports our Muslim students and colleagues as well as all of the international members of our community. The quality of a Furman education is determined in part by the richness and diversity of the experiences and perspectives that are represented in the conversations that we have with one another. We will continue to celebrate and develop the talents and passions of our students, faculty, and staff members of all backgrounds, beliefs, countries of origin, religions, and identities.
James Smith, Eastern Michigan University
Eastern Michigan University is unwavering in our commitment to the safety and success of our international community. I would like to assure our international students and scholars that we will continue to review the impact of the executive order in the days ahead and will provide additional information and support as necessary.
The University will continue to support international students without regard to their immigration status. That status is among the areas protected under the University’s privacy policies, which follow all federal and state laws. The University does not provide information on a student’s immigration status to anyone, except when required by law.
James Danko, Butler University
In the wake of the executive order on immigration signed on January 27, I want to reaffirm Butler University’s role as an institution where all people are welcomed and valued—regardless of religion, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity, or political beliefs.
The immigration ban, and the manner in which it has been implemented, is contrary to the principles of Butler University and detrimental to our educational mission. I join the many other leaders and citizens across Indiana, the United States, and the world in condemning this executive order and asking that it be revoked.
Stephen Sundborg, Seattle University
As a Jesuit Catholic institution, Seattle University is deeply committed to the dignity and equality of every individual, to the common good and to developing leaders for a just and humane world. We are a welcoming and inclusive community that is steadfast in our commitment to provide a safe learning environment and support every student in our campus community—regardless of background, religion, beliefs, identity, country of origin or immigration status. We find enrichment and strength in our diversity.
Richard Benson, University of Texas – Dallas
From its founding, UT Dallas has benefited from the advantages of a diverse community. This University stands firmly committed to the educational growth that comes from cultural exchange that takes place when we interact with scholars from around the world.
Angel Cabrera, George Mason University
I am deeply concerned about this decision. This is not only unbefitting a country built by immigrants on the ideals of liberty and equality, but it is also a self-inflicted wound that will damage the very innovation that lies at the root of our nation’s prosperity.
At George Mason, hundreds of faculty, staff and students were born outside of the United States, including our Provost, our Vice President of Research, our Dean of Science, some of our most distinguished professors, and yours truly. Many of the most talented leaders, academics, humanitarians, and entrepreneurs to come out of Mason are immigrants.
Nathan Hatch, Wake Forest University
I deeply empathize with all of you concerned for your personal safety and the security of your family. I reaffirm my commitment to do everything within my power as the president of Wake Forest University to support every member of our community in their pursuit of an education.
We now have an opportunity to reaffirm our values. Wake Forest stands for the respect and dignity of all people, for the diversity that enriches a community of learning and for the spirit of inclusion that makes a community feel like home. Wake Forest stands for creating opportunity for the betterment of ourselves and our neighbors.
George Ross, Central Michigan University
The Central Michigan University family includes students, faculty, staff and alumni from around the world with wonderfully diverse backgrounds and identities. These differences, including in perspective and knowledge, help make our university great and enrich our academic contributions, research and service to others.
We work diligently to foster a diverse and inclusive community where individuals of many races, genders, religions and other identities feel safe and valued. Our commitment can be seen in our recruitment from countries around the world, including the seven named in Friday evening’s executive order issued by the president of the United States.
Jay Gogue, Auburn University
Auburn is an international university. Students, faculty and staff from all backgrounds strengthen our campus, and we remain committed to fostering an environment that upholds our values of inclusion and diversity.
Jonathan Alger, James Madison University
James Madison’s work on the U.S. Constitution was based largely on his conviction that our republican democracy would survive only if a wide variety of differing ideas counterbalanced one another. Madison’s namesake university celebrates his legacy every day by cultivating a welcoming environment in which international students and faculty contribute vitally to our community. Diversity of thought, opinion, experience and culture adds tremendous value to the university because our differences enlighten us and bind us together. Regardless of one’s country of origin, all are welcome at James Madison University.
We are a stronger and better university because of our global outreach and our commitment to access, inclusion and diversity. This commitment serves as one of our core qualities at JMU.
Paul Brown, Monmouth University
We also remain committed to ensuring that our campus continues to be a safe and welcoming place for students from all nations, for international service, and continued collaboration across borders. We have and continue to benefit from the contributions of current and former students, and permanent and visiting faculty, from the currently affected countries whose populations comprise more than 130 million people.
A cornerstone of our strategic plan is to foster opportunities for global and cultural literacy through our curriculum and programming. An important part of that commitment is embracing the diversity of cultures, languages, ethnicities, and faiths that form the Monmouth University community of students, scholars, and staff.
Nasser Payday, Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis
At IUPUI, we remain unwavering in our commitment to ensuring a welcoming, safe, civil, and inclusive community for all of our students, faculty, and staff. We recognize the absolute necessity of a diverse and inclusive community to an excellent education and welcome all IUPUI students, regardless of their background or country of origin.
At IUPUI and at colleges and universities around the world, education and research are immeasurably enriched by the presence and contributions of a wide variety of perspectives and voices, including international students, scholars, and faculty. We welcome and support them without regard to their immigration status and are committed to fostering an environment where they can succeed. We will continue and intensify the university’s long-standing advocacy for expanded access to higher education for all IUPUI students living in the United States and around the world.
Hank Bounds and the NU chancellors, University of Nebraska
We are unanimous in our view that this executive order is disturbing and disruptive to our students and employees. It does not represent the values of the University of Nebraska. And we join leaders of universities around the country in urging that it be promptly reconsidered.
Our diversity is what makes the University of Nebraska an outstanding institution of higher learning. Universities like ours have a proud history of serving as talent magnets, where the best minds come to the table to solve the world’s biggest challenges.
John Bardo, Wichita State University
The United States, the state of Kansas and Wichita State University are all stronger because of those who have come from throughout the world to study, teach and work. We embrace the diversity that international students, faculty and staff bring to learning, innovation and entrepreneurship on our campus.
Intelligence, talent, work ethic and achievement recognize no borders. We want to be clear that international students are welcome at Wichita State and we’re communicating our concerns to federal policymakers.
Conrado Gempesaw, St. Johns University
As a Catholic and Vincentian University with a 147-year history, St. John’s has—and will always be—a place that welcomes immigrants and the children of immigrants. This year, the Congregation of the Mission fittingly celebrates the 400th anniversary of the Vincentian Charism as the year of Welcoming the Stranger. At St. John’s University, we support all members of the University community, regardless of their country of origin or their chosen faith. We are committed to continuing this tradition.
James Johnsen, University of Alaska
I want to repeat that the University of Alaska is committed to ensuring that all students, staff, faculty, and their families can focus on what brought them here in the first place, the pursuit of scholarship in an environment that supports them regardless of their race, ethnicity, or national origin.
Thane McCulloh, Gonzaga University
Gonzaga University has long welcomed students, faculty and staff members from around the world without regard to ethnicity, race, or faith, seeking to create a community of people that not only celebrates diversity but works to authentically support individuals from every and any corner of the planet. This includes students, staff and faculty from nations in crisis.
Gonzaga University will support those among us who are vulnerable and who are experiencing fear and tremendous anxiety during this time: our Muslim students, immigrant families from Middle Eastern nations, and our undocumented DACA students among them. Our colleagues in departments such as the Center for Global Engagement and Student Development are working actively to support these students, but I ask each of you to actively work to create a campus climate that is welcoming and supportive of every student, regardless of race, ethnicity, culture, faith, national origin, sex, gender identity, or other means of classification or categorization. In so doing, we commit to operate not out of a place of fear, but from a place of hope and strength. And in so doing, we live out the meaning of Jesus’ second great commandment: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” (Mark 12:31).
Joseph Savoie, University of Louisiana – Lafayette
The University of Louisiana at Lafayette has historically benefited from the scientific, cultural and economic contributions of international students and scholars and values all students, faculty members and researchers, regardless of their country of origin.
The University remains firmly committed to supporting all of our international students, faculty and their families.
Mark Becker, Georgia State University
America’s higher education system has long been recognized as the best in the world, and our colleges and universities have attracted outstanding students and scholars from around the world. Georgia State alone draws students from more than 160 nations, and an ambitious global agenda is one of the five major goals in our strategic plan.
I want to assure each of you that we place great value on the many international students and scholars who make Georgia State a vibrant and thriving university. We are proud of the important contributions that international scholars and students have made to Georgia State, and we look forward to their continued contributions.
Amy Gutmann, University of Pennsylvania
Immigration strengthens the fabric of this nation and our University. Immigrants spark innovation, launch new businesses, and enrich our culture and arts. They are a precious national resource and invaluable to Penn.
We must stand together, united in our support of beloved colleagues, students, friends, and families who, no matter where they come from or how they worship, have contributed so much to our University community and to this country.
We are heirs to Penn’s heritage as the nation’s first secular university, where all religions are welcome. We are heirs to the genius and humanity of Ben Franklin.
As such, we must not and will not remain silent.
Michael Drake, Ohio State University
Ohio State remains engaged on this important issue with elected officials and national higher education organizations. While we acknowledge the importance of appropriate visa standards, we are very concerned about the broad implications of this new executive order.
Finally, I want to affirm the university’s unwavering commitment to diversity and inclusion and the value that members of the international community continue to bring to our pursuit and sharing of knowledge. We will honor our obligation to create an environment that inspires discovery and knowledge, values and celebrates diverse opinions and is welcoming to all — now and for generations to follow.
Kirk Schultz, Washington State University
Washington State University shares the deep concerns expressed nationwide about the executive order that restricts the ability of individuals from certain countries from being able to enter or return to the United States.
Let us be absolutely clear: We welcome and support all members of the Washington State community—regardless of the country they call home. We remain unflinchingly committed to respecting the dignity of each individual—regardless of race, ethnicity, gender, national origin, gender identity or expression, religion, or sexual orientation. We will continue to foster a diverse and inclusive community, embrace civil discourse, and strive to ensure a welcoming and safe environment for all.
William McRaven, University of Texas System
I would hope that my commitment to our nation’s security cannot be questioned. I stand behind our nation’s efforts to ensure all our citizens are free from the threat that terrorism can bring to our shores.
But, I also stand behind the core values we hold as a nation. We ask that our leaders in Washington, D.C., move quickly to clarify the intent of this order, bring reasonable and expeditious process to its implementation, and send the message to the rest of the world that the United States remains open and welcoming to those who want to come here to learn, work and to live the American experience.
Timothy White and CSU presidents, California State University
We are deeply troubled by President Trump’s recent executive order that stands in stark contrast to the fundamental tenets of the California State University. We believe in the free exchange of ideas globally, central to which is our ability to welcome and interact with those from around the world.
When something threatens our ability to think beyond our borders and learn from the world as a whole, we will oppose it. When something impacts anyone in our CSU community – especially the most vulnerable – it impacts us all.
Therefore, we oppose the divisiveness of the recent executive order, and we stand with state and national officials in requesting that the President reconsider this policy.
Joseph Steinmetz, University of Arkansas
Over the weekend, we heard from many who are concerned – as well as those who have been directly impacted by the order. The international students and scholars who choose Arkansas as their academic home away from home are a valuable part of our community. These individuals make important contributions to our campus, and impacts to this population most certainly have ripple effects on the rest of campus. We share these concerns and while there are still many questions that we cannot answer, we are focused on supporting all of our students and finding a way forward.
Gary Ransdell, Western Kentucky University
First and foremost, I want to send the message to our international students and faculty that you are an important member of the WKU family, and you are safe and welcome here.
Internationalization remains a high priority at WKU, and the University is committed to providing a safe and welcoming environment for all people, regardless of nationality.
Daniel Mahony, Winthrop University
This moment demands we re-affirm our commitment to our entire Winthrop Family. Nowhere is that commitment better expressed than through our Global Learning Initiative which seeks to prepare our students to be educated and involved global citizens, to understand their place in global society and their responsibilities to human society at large, and to take great joy at celebrating the very rich cultures of their communities, states, regions, nations, and world.
Scott Dalrymple, Columbia College
This is a fluid situation, but I want to be clear that Columbia College welcomes all of our international students regardless of their nationality or religious background. We are a diverse and inclusive college community spanning the entire country with students from around the globe, and it is important that all members of our community know they are valued. Our Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee is carefully monitoring this situation, with our students and the larger college community in mind.
Tom Mengler, St. Mary’s University
At the annual meeting of the American Catholic Colleges and Universities, St. Mary’s reaffirmed its solidarity with brothers and sisters across the country in unabashed support and love for those seeking community, safety, healing and refuge in America. During a time of uncertainty for many – especially after the ban of refugees entering the U.S. from seven majority-Muslim countries – it’s important that we stand with those who have been adversely affected.
All are welcome at St. Mary’s, regardless of faith, national origin, immigration status, race or ethnicity. As a community, we stand for the oppressed, the sojourner, the poor and the victims of injustice. Driven by these commitments, St. Mary’s will remain steadfastly committed to being a diverse and inclusive community.