Presidential Order on Immigration

The Presidential Executive Order
by Martha Turner, Director, International Student and Scholar Advising

One week ago President Trump issued an Executive Order (EO) that affected a number of our students and scholars.  The EO prohibits citizens of Iraq, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen from entering the United States for the next 90 days.  We had already emailed all of the international students and scholars from the affected seven countries to make them aware of what was rumored to be implemented. This week we have sent two email updates with additional information to these students and had a number of email and in person consultations this week.  Fortunately, no Washington University student or scholar was outside the U.S. when the travel ban went into effect.

In addition, we have emailed all international students and scholars information about the Executive Order as well as invitations to two events this week dealing with the changes.  (See the text of the email below this article).  One was a panel discussion hosted by the Law School, concerning the order. It was led by faculty at the Law School and a discussion with OISS regarding the impact of the Executive Order.  A recording of the panel discussion can be found at:

The Office for International Students and Scholars also hosted a discussion of the Executive Order and addressed general concerns that students had about potential additional changes in immigration rules.  The counseling services offered by the Student Health Service as well as the Bias Reporting and Support System of the Center for Diversity and Inclusion ( were also highlighted.

Yesterday, in The Record, Chancellor Wrighton affirmed that Washington University is a Global Community of Scholars.  He said, “The safety, well-being and academic success of all of our students, faculty and staff — regardless of immigration status, race, ethnicity, nationality or any other identity — is a high priority.”

There is a possibility of additional changes in immigration policy during the Trump administration that may affect our international students and scholars.  We will review any new policies or regulations that are issued and keep our students and scholars informed and advised as best as possible.


(Below is the text of the email that went out to all International Students and Scholars about the Executive Order)


Dear International Students and Scholars,

By now you have received a message from the Chancellor about the Presidential Executive Order that was signed on Friday afternoon regarding a travel ban for citizens from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen. We understand that even students and scholars from other countries are concerned about other changes related to their immigration status that may be announced in the future. I would like to affirm the commitment of the Office for International Students and Scholars (OISS) to support our international students as we navigate changes in the immigration policies. We understand that this is a stressful time for international students and scholars and we, at OISS, are here to assist you as we can.

Because many international students are seeking more information, we would like to announce two upcoming programs that may be of interest to you:

Immigration and Executive Orders: Bring Your Questions
Tuesday, January 31, 2017
12:00 – 1:00 p.m.
Anheuser-Busch Hall, Bryan Cave Moot Courtroom
This is a panel discussion on immigration and executive orders. Panelists include Professors Stephen Legomsky, Ron Levin, Leila Sadat and Nancy Leong.

Your Immigration Status as F-1s, J-1s and H-1Bs
Thursday, February 2, 2017
5:00 – 6:00 p.m.
Danforth University Center, Goldberg Formal Lounge (2nd Floor)

This is a discussion, with opportunities for questions about nonimmigrant statuses at Washington University, including F-1s, J-1s and H-1Bs. The staff of the OISS will be available to answer questions about these statuses and provide information about resources. The focus of this session is not specifically on the Executive Order.

There are also other resources on campus that can be very helpful in uncertain times like these. The Student Health Service has counselors available for students on the Danforth campus. The Center for Diversity and Inclusion also has a Bias Report and Support System for students who experience some type of bias-related incident.

Washington University is made better by the contributions of international students and scholars. You are all an important part of our community and that will not change.

Kathy Steiner-Lang
Assistant Vice-Chancellor
Director, Office for International Students & Scholars
Washington University in St. Louis
Campus Box 1083
1 Brookings Drive
St. Louis, MO 63130
(314) 935-5910