A message of affirmation for our entire student community

July 15, 2020

President Schatzel sent a message on Wednesday reaffirming Towson University's commitment to international students.

Dear TU students, faculty and staff —

I am pleased that U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) is abandoning plans to bar international students from residing in the United States if taking only online courses.

I echo the gratification of University System of Maryland (USM) Chancellor Jay Perman for this reversal of initial ICE guidance, which ran contrary to the inclusive mission of Towson University to relentlessly support all our students to thrive and realize their fullest potential.

While I remained confident that TU’s commitment to offering face-to-face and hybrid courses allows our international students to continue to pursue their degrees, I shared Monday that the USM had joined a multistate lawsuit against ICE. That lawsuit successfully aimed to halt proposed guidance issued last week stating that international students on F-1 and M-1 visas may not take “a full online courseload” and remain in the U.S.

Tuesday’s reversal of course by ICE means that TU may continue onward with our work toward a safe return to campus for all of our students, without the unnecessary stress placed upon our international students.

This correction of such an impetuous proposal is affirmation of higher education’s valuable contributions to society. It is also recognition of the important role our ambitious international student population plays in our country and the impact this generation will have on the future.

We look forward to welcoming our students back to classes next month.

Kim Schatzel, Ph.D.