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Update on F-1 Visa Guidelines

July 14, 2020

Dear Colleagues:

Last week, I voiced El Camino College’s strong opposition to guidelines announced by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) that would have prohibited international F-1 visa students from returning to or remaining in the U.S. this fall if the colleges they attend offer online-only instruction amid the COVID-19 pandemic. California’s three public higher education systems joined other colleges and universities nationwide in filing lawsuits challenging these guidelines.

I am pleased to report that the Trump administration reversed course today, telling a federal judge that ICE was dropping the guidelines and would return to the status quo. This means international students holding F-1 visas can remain in the U.S. while taking classes online during the COVID-19 pandemic. This news is a huge relief for more than 300 of our international students at El Camino College who were immediately imperiled by these guidelines.

In a statement this afternoon, Chancellor Oakley indicated our system remains “cautious about the intentions of ICE and the Trump administration as it relates to international students” and will “continue to pursue further clarification and protections for all of our students.” Similarly, El Camino College will continue to support and assist our international students during this time of uncertainty to ensure they’re able to successfully achieve their educational goals.

Best regards,

Dena Maloney
El Camino Community College District
16007 Crenshaw Blvd. Torrance, CA 90506