The President of the United States has signed several Executive Orders on immigration intended to keep the country safe from potential terrorist threats, protect U.S. workers, and stop illegal immigration. It is important for you to know that some of the provisions of the Executive Orders could affect you directly or indirectly.
Please note that the implementation of these orders is still evolving and likely to change. Updates will be posted as information from reliable sources is received.
UNH response to the Executive Orders: President Mark Huddleston's Letter to the UNH Community - January 29, 2017
Expect regulations to be more strictly enforced. Take a moment to review your immigration documents to ensure they are valid and remember to renew/extend your documents before they expire.
- I-20 or DS-2019
- Employment Authorization
To maintain status, students must also:
- Enroll full-time each academic term
- Report address changes to OISS within 10 days
Scholars are required to report address changes here.
Where can I find the full texts of the Executive Orders?
Enhancing Public Safety in the Interior of the United States signed January 25, 2017
Border Security and Immigration Enforcement Improvements signed January 25, 2017
Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States signed January 27, 2017 and updated March 6, 2017
- Fact Sheet and Q&A on New Travel Executive Order, as published by The Washington Post
How might the Executive Orders affect me?
There are many provisions in the Executive Orders related to immigration. This Fact Sheet will focus only on key sections that may impact international students and scholars.
Section 3(c) of Executive Order 13769, "Protecting the Nation from Terrorist Entry into the United States" bans individuals from 7 countries - Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen from entry to the United States for at least 90 days from the date of signing the EO. This means that if you are from one of these countries and you leave the United States for any reason, you will be barred re-entry until after the ban is lifted.
Update: On February 3rd, the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington in Seattle granted a temporary restraining order (TRO) that temporarily prohibits the Federal government from enforcing Section 3(c) of Executive Order 13769, the provision that established the 90-day ban on entry of "immigrants and nonimmigrants" from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen. The TRO "is granted on a nationwide basis," according to the order. The ruling is being challenged by the government.
Section 8 of Executive Order 13769 suspends the Visa Interview Waiver Program for all countries. This change may affect those who need to renew their visas in order to return to the United States. What you can expect:
- Personal interviews may be required
- Delays in visa appointments worldwide
- Additional screening at visa interviews
- Background checks that may take several weeks or months
USCIS Implementation of Jan. 27 Executive Order
Initially, it was reported that U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) was not adjudicating applications for immigration benefits. On February 2nd, USCIS issued a clarification:
"USCIS continues to adjudicate applications and petitions filed for or on behalf of individuals in the United States regardless of their country of origin, and applications and petitions of lawful permanent residents outside the U.S. USCIS also continues to adjudicate applications and petitions for individuals outside the U.S. whose approval does not directly confer travel authorization. Applications to adjust status also continue to be adjudicated, according to existing policies and procedures, for applicants who are nationals of countries designated in the Jan. 27, 2017, "Executive Order" Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States."
- Individuals from the 7 affected countries - postpone travel until the ban is lifted
- All others - plan ahead to allow sufficient time for visa proceeding and screening at port-of-entry
- Consult OISS advisors before traveling