June 23, 2020
To: Members of the University Community
From: Robert J. Zimmer and Ka Yee C. Lee
Subject: Executive Order on Immigration
Date: June 23, 2020
The University of Chicago’s ability to engage with members of the international community is of fundamental importance to fulfilling our highest aspirations in education, research, and impact, and we are closely tracking federal actions, including executive orders, that affect this engagement or impact members of our community who come from other countries.
Yesterday, the Trump administration issued an executive order suspending the issuance of H-1B and other employment-based visas until the end of the year. The order affects the University’s ability to hire international scholars and staff, and the ability of our international alumni to work in the U.S., and as such it is of deep concern. This executive order does not affect F-1 or J-1 visas for students, nor does it affect OPT – optional practical training, which provides temporary employment authorization for students. You can find more information on the executive order here.
The University’s Office of International Affairs is reaching out directly to individuals who do not yet have visas and may be negatively affected by yesterday’s executive order, and is working closely with other U.S. institutions and higher education associations regarding the implementation of the order. If you have questions or concerns, please contact Nick Seamons, director of the Office of International Affairs.
Immigrants have made extraordinary contributions to the United States and the University of Chicago specifically. Restrictions on the flow of talented scholars, students, and staff into this country damage the University’s capacity to fulfill our mission. We want to take this opportunity to express again the University of Chicago’s strong support for members of the University community who come from all parts of the world, and our commitment to being an institution welcoming scholars, students, and staff from all backgrounds.