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South Florida University reacts to new ICE regulations for international students

Posted at 6:34 PM, Jul 07, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-07 18:34:09-04

PALM BEACH COUNTY, Fla. — For Valentina Moretti her college years were some of the best years of her life.

“I went to Florida Atlantic University, go Owls,” she exclaimed.

Moretti says she moved to South Florida from Venezuela with her entire family on a F-1 student visa.

“That means my family is a dependent, whatever happens to me happens to them,” she said.

That’s one of the reason’s she calls U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement new rule heartbreaking.

On Monday, ICE released new regulations requiring international students to return to their country if their school is only offering online courses because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The impact also in the university is going to be tremendous because we come and pay a different fee for the same education,” Moretti said. We pay ten times more than what it is.”

The Chancellor of Keiser University, Arthur Keiser says this new regulation could be devastating for universities across the country. He says currently they have students from 46 countries around the world.

“Schools that heavily rely on students from China and students from Europe they will be significantly impacted financially,” Keiser said.

He says their plan is to offer ‘hybrid classes’ both online and in person which would allow international students to stay. However, he says the changes in coronavirus cases makes it difficult to stick to a plan.

“We were supposed to start for our adult learners back in class yesterday, but because of the spike in South Florida we decided not to do that and we kept the students online,” he said. “It is a challenge for students to prepare and anticipate what the coronavirus is going to be doing.”