K-State professors call for cancellation of SEVP student ban

Published: Jul. 10, 2020 at 2:39 PM CDT
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MANHATTAN, Kan. (WIBW) - In an op-ed from Kansas State University, multiple distinguished professors call for the cancellation of the SEVP student ban.

In an op-ed letter to Kansas Senators and Representatives from distinguished Kansas State University professors, University of Kansas professors, University of Kansas Medical Center professors and Wichita State University professors call for the cancellation of the SEVP student ban which cancels the visas of international students studying in the United States if their classes are held online in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We oppose the Student and Exchange Visitor Program’s student ban, and we ask that you — our representatives in Washington — push for its immediate cancellation,” say the professors. “The decision not to “issue visas to students enrolled in schools and/or programs that are fully online for the fall” has no rational basis, serves no practical purpose, damages American universities, and is simply cruel.”

The Kansas professors say the U.S. thrives when welcoming the world’s greatest minds. If international students learn that they are unwelcome, they will go elsewhere. The professors say unless immediately rescinded, the student ban could catastrophically damage the reputation of the United States higher education system for years.

The professors also say international students subsidize domestic students and if expelled from higher education in the states, colleges and universities - whose budgets have already been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic - will incur even greater losses. According to the NAFSA: Association of International Educators, international students contributed $41 billion to the American economy in 2019.

The professors say the student ban is cruel. It expels students in the middle of a pandemic serving no useful purpose. They say it does not increase their safety or the safety of U.S. nationals. Forcing students to travel puts them at greater risk, disrupts their education and instills in the future leaders a permanent suspicion for the motives of the U.S. says the professors.

According to the Kansas professors, talented people have come from around the globe to make America great. Those born in other countries have a long history of enriching the intellectual, social and cultural lives of Americans.

The professors point out that physicist Albert Einstein (Germany), inventor Nikola Tesla (Croatia), architect I.M. Pei (China), cancer researcher Elizabeth Stern (Canada), novelist Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (Nigeria), actress Natalie Portman (Israel), Google co-founder Sergey Brin (Russia), Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella (India) and Garmin co-founder Min Kao (Taiwan) are only but a few of the countless who have lent their brilliance to the U.S. They say the student ban will prevent the bright young people studying in the states right now from doing the same.

“In our private capacity as university distinguished professors at Kansas State University and the University of Kansas Medical Center and distinguished professors at the University of Kansas and Wichita State University, we ask that you revoke the student ban,” says the letter from the Kansas professors.

Professors that signed the letter are as follows:

  • Christer B. Aakerӧy, Chemistry, K-State
  • Perry Alexander, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, KU
  • Beth Bailey, History, KU
  • William A. Barnett, Economics, KU
  • Thomas J. Barstow, Kinesiology, K-State
  • Alice Bean, Physics, KU
  • K. Christopher Beard, Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, KU
  • Cory Berkland, Pharmaceutical Chemistry, KU
  • James D. Bever, Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, KU
  • Raj Bhala, Law, KU
  • Monica Biernat, Psychology, KU
  • John Blair, Biology, K-State
  • Frank Blecha, Anatomy and Physiology, K-State
  • Mike Blum, Geology, KU
  • Stefan H. Bossmann, Chemistry, K-State
  • George R. Bousfield, Biological Sciences, WSU
  • Nyla Branscombe, Psychology, KU
  • Yolanda Broyles-González, American Ethnic Studies, K-State
  • James Calvet, Biochemistry, KUMC
  • Joyce Castle, School of Music, KU
  • M.M. Chengappa, Veterinary Medicine, K-State
  • C. Lewis Cocke, K-State, Physics
  • Bernard Cornet, Microeconomics, KU
  • David Darwin, Civil, Environmental & Architectural Engineering, KU
  • Elizabeth Dodd, English, K-State
  • Walter K. Dodds, Biology, K-State
  • James H. Edgar, Chemical Engineering, K-State
  • Michael S. Engel, Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, KU
  • Charles Epp, Public Affairs, KU
  • David Farber, History, KU
  • Randall Fuller, English, KU
  • Keith Gido, Biology, K-State
  • Wayne Everett Goins, Music, K-State
  • Robert H. Goldstein, Geology, KU
  • Michael Hageman, Pharmaceutical Chemistry, KU
  • John W. Head, Law, KU
  • Anne D. Hedeman, Art History, KU
  • Andrew C. Isenberg, History, KU
  • Hartmut Jaeschke, Pharmacology, Toxicology & Therapeutics, KUMC
  • Ryszard Jankowiak, Chemistry, K-State
  • Michael R. Kanost, Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics, K-State
  • Neal Kingston, Educational Psychology, KU
  • M.B. Kirkham, Agronomy, K-State
  • Kimberly Kirkpatrick, Psychological Sciences, K-State
  • Phillip E. Klebba, Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics, K-State
  • John F. Leslie, Plant Pathology, K-State
  • Susan Lunte, Chemistry and Pharmaceutical Chemistry, KU
  • Joe Lutkenhaus, Microbiology, KUMC
  • Rolfe D. Mandel, Anthropology, KU
  • Richard Marston, Geography & Geospatial Sciences, K-State
  • Joane Nagel, Sociology, KU
  • T.G. Nagaraja, Diagnostic Medicine and Pathobiology, K-State
  • Philip Nel, English, K-State
  • David Nualart, Mathematics, KU
  • Randolph J. Nudo, Rehabilitation Medicine, KUMC
  • Berl R. Oakley, Molecular and Cellular Biology, KU
  • Rosemary O’Leary, Public Affairs, KU
  • Dennis H. O’Rourke, Anthropology, KU
  • Anil Pahwa, Electrical and Computer Engineering, K-State
  • A. Townsend Peterson, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, KU
  • William D. Picking, Pharmaceutical Chemistry, KU
  • David C. Poole, Kinesiology, Anatomy and Physiology, K-State
  • P.V. Vara Prasad, Agronomy, K-State
  • Harald E.L. Prins, Emeritus, Anthropology, K-State
  • Bharat Ratra, Physics, K-State
  • Charles W. Rice, Agronomy, K-State
  • Mabel L. Rice, Speech, Language, Hearing, KU
  • David Roediger, American Studies, KU
  • Robert Rohrschneider, Political Science, KU
  • Christophe Royon, Physics, KU
  • Paul Selden, Emeritus, Geology, KU
  • Prakash P. Shenoy, Business, KU
  • James E. Sherow, Emeritus, History, K-State
  • Mark B. Shiflett, Chemical and Petroleum Engineering, KU
  • Tom Skrtic, Special Education, KU
  • C. Michael Smith, Emeritus, Entomology, K-State
  • Michael J. Soares, Pathology, KUMC
  • Jorge L. Soberón, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, KU
  • Yan Soibelman, Mathematics, K-State
  • Christopher Sorensen, Physics, K-State
  • Brian Spooner, Biology, K-State
  • Sandra M. Stith, Applied Human Sciences, K-State
  • Karan S. Surana, Mechanical Engineering, KU
  • Uwe Thumm, Physics, K-State
  • Mike Tokach, Animal Sciences and Industry, K-State
  • Barbara Valent, Plant Pathology, K-State David B. Volkin, Pharmaceutical Chemistry, KU
  • J. Douglas Walker, Geology, KU
  • Steven F. Warren, Speech, Language, Hearing Sciences and Disorders, KU
  • Robert Warrior, American Literature and Culture, KU
  • Laurence Weatherley, Chemical and Petroleum Engineering, KU
  • Michael L. Wehmeyer, Special Education, KU
  • Ruth Welti, Biology, K-State
  • Kun Yan Zhu, Entomology, K-State
  • Dean Zollman, Emeritus, Physics, K-State

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