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Message from the Director (January 30th, 2017)


Dear International Students,

Please know that wherever you come from and whatever your background, we warmly welcome you to the University of Colorado Denver | Anschutz Medical Campus and consider you an integral part of our community.  Know too, that we are here to help you navigate your immigration situation and offer the support that you need to be successful.  Please find below the information that we are able to share with you as of Tuesday, January 31, 2017 regarding the President’s Executive Order on immigration. 

On Friday, January 27, 2017, President Trump signed an Executive Order, entitled “Protecting the Nation from Terrorist Entry into the United States by Foreign Nationals” that included the following provisions:

  • Ban on nonimmigrant entries, for at least 90 days, for nationals of Iraq, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen.  Other countries may be added.  Nonimmigrant statuses include anyone in B, F, J, H, or O status.  The term “national” is somewhat vague, but does include citizens of the listed countries.  The ban does not apply to individuals with dual citizenship from one of the listed countries and the U.S.  The travel ban does not include individuals who are citizens of a non-listed country who travelled to one of the listed countries.
  • Suspension of the Visa Interview Waiver Program (VIWP), requiring all nonimmigrant visa applicants, regardless of where they are from, to attend a visa interview at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate abroad.
  • Directive to the Secretary of Homeland Security, Secretary of State, and the Director of National Intelligence, to immediately conduct a review to determine the information needed from any country to adjudicate any visa, admission, or other benefit under the INA (adjudications) in order to determine that the individual seeking the benefit is who the individual claims to be and is not a security or public-safety threat.
    • ​​​Within 30 days, DHS must submit a report to the President of its conclusions and include a list of the countries that do not provide adequate information for adjudications. Identified countries will be given 60 days to start providing required information.
    • After 60 days, DHS will submit a list of countries recommended to be included in a Presidential Proclamation prohibiting the “entry of foreign nationals” from countries that have not complied until compliance occurs.
  • Directive to federal agencies to develop screening standards and procedures for all immigration benefits to identify fraud and detect whether a person intends to do harm. Agencies are directed to create a process to evaluate the person’s “likelihood of becoming a positively contributing member of society” and “ability to make contributions to the national interest.”
  • Directive to agencies to expedite the completion and implementation of a biometric entry-exit system and includes reporting requirements.
  • Immediate halt to all U.S. refugee admissions for four months and indefinite halt to all Syrian refugee admissions.

Several legal actions were filed in federal court in response to the Executive Order and subsequent  government actions.  The full consequences of these lawsuits are not yet clear, but several press releases were issued on Sunday by the Department of Homeland Security. 


Executive Orders Remain in Effect 

On January 29, 2017, DHS issued a press release confirming the agency “will continue to enforce all of President Trump’s Executive Orders” and that “President Trump’s Executive Orders remain in place—prohibited travel will remain prohibited, and the US government retains its right to revoke visas at any time if required for national security or public safety.”


Impact on Permanent Residents 

Secretary Kelly of the Department of Homeland Security released a press statement Sunday evening clarifying how the Executive Order applies to Lawful Permanent Residents (LPRs): "I hereby deem the entry of lawful permanent residents to be in the national interest.”  Although Permanent Residents will continue to be reviewed upon entry, “absent the receipt of significant derogatory information indicating a serious threat to public safety and welfare, lawful permanent resident status will be a dispositive factor in our case-by-case determinations.”

A January 29, 2017 DHS Fact Sheet describes Secretary Kelly's determination in further detail:  “[L]awful permanent residents of the United States will be allowed to board U.S. bound aircraft and will be assessed for exceptions at arrival ports of entry, as appropriate. The entry of these individuals, subject to national security checks, is in the national interest. Therefore, we expect swift entry for these individuals."


International Travel

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security stated that they are working closely with airline partners to prevent travelers who would not be granted entry under the executive orders from boarding international flights to the U.S.  To the extent possible, we would suggest that any member of our international community who must travel fly directly into Denver International Airport (DIA).  In the past, Customs and Border Protection officials at DIA have been willing to work cooperatively with ISSS to resolve issues with entry. 

If you are from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, or Yemen, we strongly advise you not to travel outside of the U.S. until further notice.  If you know of a colleague or fellow student from any of these countries who is currently outside the U.S., please let an ISSS staff member know immediately.  You can reach us by sending an e-mail to ISSS@ucdenver.edu or by calling (303) 315-2230.


Other Potential Impacts of the Executive Order

As a result of this Executive Order, ISSS is anticipating longer processing time for petitions and applications submitted to USCIS for adjudication.  Visa applications as U.S. Embassies and Consulates abroad are also likely to take more time.  Finally, international students and scholars may experience additional screening upon reentry to the U.S. after international travel. 

ISSS staff is closely monitoring this very fluid situation, and will do the best we can to get relevant and reliable information to you in a timely manner.  Please do not hesitate to contact ISSS with any questions, concerns, comments, or suggestions.  You will find our current portfolio assignments on the ISSS website here.   You may also contact me directly at Michelle.larson-krieg@ucdenver.edu or 303.315.2235. 

We understand that this Executive Order has the potential to cause significant stress and anxiety for anyone who is impacted, either directly or indirectly.  It is very important that you take care of both your physical and mental health.  Talking to a mental health professional about managing stress, staying focused on your studies, and healthy interpersonal relationship can be very important.  

 

Resources on the Anschutz Medical Campus

Student Mental Health in Building 500 –  Call (303) 724-4716 or you can visit their website at http://www.ucdenver.edu/academics/colleges/medicalschool/departments/psychiatry/PatientCare/StudentMentalHealth/Pages/Student-Mental-Health-Service.aspx

For after-hours (5:00 p.m. to 8:00 a.m.) emergencies related to mental health, please call (720) 848-0000 and identify yourself as an Anschutz Medical Campus student.

Campus Health Center in the Wellness Center – Mental Health walk-ins are available between 10 – 11 a.m. and 3-4 p.m.   You can also call the Campus Health Center on (303) 724-6242.

 

Resources on the Downtown Denver Campus 

The Counseling Center located in the Tivoli Building on the 4th floor at 900 Auraria Parkway, Denver CO 80204 serves students on the Downtown Denver Campus.    

 

Sincerely,

 

Michelle Larson-Krieg, J.D. | Director
International Student & Scholar Services​ | International Affairs
University of Colorado Denver | Anschutz Medical Campus


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