The Florida A&M University Office of International Education and Development has been notified by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement that temporary exemptions for non-immigrant students taking online classes due to the pandemic for the fall 2020 semester will be modified. The Student and Exchange Visitor Program will require International students attending schools to be enrolled in at least one face-to-face or hybrid class to remain in the country.
In response to the ICE announcement, Maurice Edington, Ph.D., provost and vice president of Academic Affairs, said FAMU is working to provide course enrollment options to accommodate the needs of international students.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has presented new challenges for us and our international students,” Edington said. “We are working diligently to ensure there are adequate course options so that those students can remain eligible to continue at FAMU and progress toward graduation without interruption. FAMU has a tradition of welcoming and educating international students who have gone on to make significant contributions in their respective fields.”
About 250 international students are enrolled at FAMU at this time. Assistant Vice President for the Office of International Education and Development, William Hyndman III, is coordinating campus efforts in collaboration with the deans in the schools and colleges.
“Deans will be advising students accordingly so that those students who want to remain in the U.S. can be enrolled in a face-to-face or hybrid class in the fall semester,” Hyndman said. “We highly value our international students. They have long been an integral and essential component of the FAMU educational experience. We will work closely with our students to accomplish what is in their best interest during this unprecedented crisis.”
A virtual town hall for international students and their parents is scheduled for July 14, 2020 at 4 p.m.