Message to international students and scholars from China regarding May 29 Presidential Proclamation

May 31, 2020


We’re writing today to express our support for you as we continue to face political, economic and health challenges in our two nations and assess the impact of recent governmental proclamations and visa policies.

On Friday, May 29, 2020, President Trump issued a proclamation that outlines the “suspension of entry as nonimmigrants of certain students and researchers from the People’s Republic of China (PRC).” The proclamation directs the U.S. Secretary of State to consider “whether nationals of the PRC currently in the U.S. in F or J visa status should have their visas revoked” if they are determined to have taken “actions at the behest of the PRC to acquire and divert foreign technologies, specifically critical and emerging technologies, to incorporate into and advance the PRC’s military capabilities.” The proclamation exempts PRC students studying at the undergraduate level. It is unclear how this directive will be implemented. We will continue to see clarification through the federal agencies responsible for implementation and through our professional associations, including NAFSA, which has provided a summary of the proclamation.

MU has hosted international students and scholars for more than 100 years. We believe that the open and unfettered search for knowledge among learners from all over the world yields greater dividends, not only for Missourians and Americans, but for the betterment of all humankind. This belief endures and we will continue to advocate for the maintenance of F and J visa access for MU international students and researchers from all countries, including China, as well as optional practical training opportunities in all fields.

As individuals and communities, we all want the best things life has to offer. Particularly in the context of higher education, we desire to expand our intellectual and vocational horizons, and the opportunities they afford, through discovery and excellence, two pillars of our core values at Mizzou. Through respect and responsibility, the other two pillars, we also seek to understand and know one another, our similarities and differences, by engaging in authentic, open and civil discourse. We continue to believe this is possible, and even more critical, in the midst of a worldwide crisis.

Our commitment to you as our faculty, students and staff, as well as our alumni, colleagues, friends and Mizzou family members, is undeterred and remains steadfast. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us (isss@missouri.edu).