Weathering the changes brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic can already be extremely challenging and stressful on its own, with uncertainties over personal finance, health concerns, and rising death tolls around the world adding to people’s daily struggles. Yet, for international students at higher education institutions in the U.S., the crisis might become even more worrisome. In fact, situations may become impossible after the latest guidelines issued by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) cast doubts over their right to stay legally in the country.
On July 6, ICE announced special regulations over the stays and visa status of nonimmigrant international students (F-1 and M-1 visa holders) at U.S. universities for the Fall 2020 term.
The new regulations were said to “provide flexibility to schools and nonimmigrant students” while mitigating health hazards amid the Covid-19 pandemic. Yet they might further endanger international students and make it increasingly difficult for them to stay in the U.S.