SUNY: Trump administration’s proposed visa change risks international students

New York

CAPITAL REGION, N.Y. (NEWS10) — President Donald Trump’s administration has proposed eliminating the “duration of status” for international students, exchange visitors, and those working in international media.

SUNY Chancellor Jim Malatras has criticized the proposal in a letter to the Department of Homeland Security, saying the it would put students at risk and destabilize the economy.

“While national security is of the utmost concern,,” he wrote, “campuses across the SUNY system have already implemented and followed rigorous protocols in coordination with federal and state authorities.”

There are well over 20,000 international students in the SUNY system. The duration of status allows international students who carry a full course load to stay in the U.S. for as long as it takes them to finish their degree. Eliminating this would put a fixed time limit on students’ visas.

Malatras says many would not be able to finish their degrees. DHS said the current duration of status policy, and an increase in the number of f-visa academic students, pose “a challenge to the department’s ability to effectively monitor and oversee these categories of non-immigrants.”

Malatras closed out the letter by saying he is committed to working with Homeland Security on a new proposal that accomplishes national security goals, while also keeping the U.S. a hub for international learning.

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