The Trump administration is putting the economy at risk and throwing the higher education system into disarray with the recent announcement that international students must now be enrolled in at least some of their classes physically on-campus, despite the current ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and many universities have moved classes online for the interim. Failure to do so can result in removal from America due to a July 6th ICE policy change relating to the Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) which has resulted in seventeen states and Washington, DC has filed a lawsuit against the Trump administration’s new policy.
The leading global destination for international students in America, with foreign students contributing around $45 billion to the U.S. economy annually. There are concerns that recent commencement data is falling, undermining the industry and making the country a less appealing destination overall for the highly competitive sector for foreign students. Along with the significant economic benefits, international students bring with them a range of social, cultural, and soft-power political advantages.