To the UC Davis community:
On July 6, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security published new guidelines for the Student and Exchange Visitor Program, or SEVP, that impacts thousands of our international students at UC Davis. Like our colleagues across campus and throughout the University of California system, we are deeply concerned by these new guidelines as they are an abrupt departure from the Homeland Security guidance provided for spring and summer 2020 and they run counter to our values at UC Davis. In fact, these guidelines are cruel and thoughtless. We want to assure you that UC Davis remains committed to supporting our international students and scholars who add enormously to the excellence that puts us amongst the world’s leading research and teaching institutions.
We are here to help you. Please know this new Homeland Security guidance has no immediate effect on visa statuses. And please be assured that, so long as permitted by public health authorities, we are committed to providing ample in-person class experiences to enable those who need in-person courses to comply with the recently announced federal requirements. Our team in Services for International Students and Scholars, or SISS, within Global Affairs is hosting a webinar at 11 a.m. on July 16 with immigration attorneys to offer further clarification. Students, faculty, staff, and families can register and submit questions in advance on the SISS website. We also encourage affected international students to continue visiting this SISS webpage for ongoing updates as new information becomes available and to contact your SISS advisors with questions about unique circumstances.
We are actively working with the University of California Office of the President and our campus teams to determine the best way to move forward together. We are also partnering with our professional associations and networks to advocate in support of international educational exchange. Moreover, the University of California announced last evening that it is poised to sue the federal government over their new policy.
UC Davis is a wonderfully diverse community and we consider this one of our greatest strengths. We are proud of our global and inclusive campus. Our community benefits tremendously from welcoming the brightest students from all over the world. Our international students contribute a wealth of experiences, knowledge, and skills, and truly bring the world to UC Davis. We value international student voices, perspectives, and ideas in classes, research and other collaborations, and extra-curricular and community activities. In today’s interconnected world this global and cultural exchange is more important than ever. We also know the hard work and sacrifice of international students who have achieved so much, have strong ties in our communities, and have made UC Davis their home away from home during their studies.
Thank you for your patience and grace during what is undoubtedly a stressful and challenging time. We value each and every member of our UC Davis community and are committed to supporting our international community together.
Gary S. May
Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor
Vice Provost and Dean of Global Affairs