The United States government under President Donald Trump has issued new guidelines for students seeking visas. The new measures are poised to bar Kenyans and other nations from studying in the US.
The program will also affect exchange visitors and foreign information media representatives. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) wants students to be barred from getting visas longer than two years.
This will pose a challenge to those who get scholarships of degrees and certificates offered in a four year period.
DHS argued that the new measures will encourage program compliance, reduce fraud and enhance national security.U.S. President Donald J. Trump walks with Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta on the White House colonnade on February 6, 2020.PSCU
“This effort would create a fixed time period of admission for certain aliens, consistent with most other temporary visa classifications, while still allowing these aliens an opportunity to legally extend their stay or re-apply for admission where appropriate.
"Amending the relevant regulations is critical in improving program oversight mechanisms; preventing foreign adversaries from exploiting the country’s educational environment, and properly enforcing and strengthening U.S. immigration laws," DHS stated.
As of November 2019, over 3500 Kenyans were enrolled at different universities in the US. Students from countries flagged as terrorist financiers, Iran, Syria, Sudan and Northern Korea will also be barred from 4-year visas.
DHS added that it will not guarantee applications for extensions of visas past two years as it seeks to solve the issue of students overstaying in the country.
However, students from China, India, Brazil and Canada were exempted from the stringent measures affecting all other foreign students.
Kenyan students in the United States were among international students who faced deportation or a forced departure from the US after the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) modified temporary exemptions for nonimmigrant students on Monday, July 6.
The Students and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) announced new directives for the students taking online courses during the fall 2020 semester. The Customs department announced that the students will be deported or leave the US if their universities switch to online-only courses owing to the Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts, USFile
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