Administration rescinds directive that would have barred F-1 students

The American Medical Association (AMA) reports that the Trump Administration has rescinded a directive that would have “barred F-1 students from the U.S. if their colleges canceled in-person instruction during the pandemic.”

The U.S. Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) had modified the temporary exemptions that are available for non-immigrant students who are taking online classes due to the public health crisis for the Fall 2020 semester. It had announced that nonimmigrant F-1 and M-1 students who are “attending schools operating entirely online could not take a full online course load and enter or remain in the United States.”

In a July 9 letter, AMA urged the Trump Administration to “withdraw its modifications to the temporary exemptions for non-immigrant students taking online classes due to the pandemic for the Fall 2020 semester, so that medical students seeking to study in the U.S. on an F-1 visa could enter or remain in the country.”

AMA says that it is “grateful that the Administration has reconsidered what would have been a setback for U.S. public and rural health. International medical students can now focus on their studies – rather than their immigration status – as they prepare to enter the health field and help fight this pandemic.”

Law360 ‘Trump Administration Drops Pandemic Student Visa Policy’ article

SEVP modifies temporary exemptions for nonimmigrant students taking online courses during fall 2020 semester (July 6)

AMA letter to U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (July 9)