ICE rescinds international student rule following widespread lawsuits

Media Credit: File Photo by Grace Hromin | Assistant Photo Editor

GW signed an amicus curiae brief supporting Harvard and MIT's challenge with nearly 60 other universities Monday.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement will rescind guidance released earlier this month prohibiting international students from remaining in the U.S. if they take courses exclusively online this fall.

U.S. District Judge Allison D. Burroughs announced moments into a court hearing Tuesday that ICE and the Department of Homeland Security had reached a resolution with Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, The Associated Press reported. GW signed an amicus curiae brief supporting Harvard and MIT’s challenge with nearly 60 other universities Monday.

“I have been informed by the parties that they have come to a resolution,” Burroughs said at the hearing, The Hill reported. “They will return to the status quo.”

The Black Student Union and African Student Association released a letter Wednesday condemning the new directive and calling on officials to take a series of actions to ensure international students at GW could study in the U.S. this fall. The Immigration Law Association launched a similar petition the same day.

University President Thomas LeBlanc said the reversal is “great news” for international students and those who have advocated for international students while the policy was in place.

“This is the right decision, and it will help international students continue their education in the midst of the ongoing pandemic,” he said in an email.

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