Visa problems take toll on international
By Matt Kelly
difficulties will likely reduce the number of teaching and research
assistants working at U.Va. this year.
students particularly from China have been refused
visas because they cannot prove they will return to their homeland
after completing their education, according to the researchers
who recruited them.
July, Richard Tanson, an adviser in the International
Studies Office, said he started receiving e-mails from students
who had been accepted but couldnt get visas. This
is almost entirely dealing with new students, but there are some
continuing students who are affected as well.
estimated 10 to 20 graduate students had been denied visas this
year. About 950 of the 1,510 international students at U.Va. are
graduate students. Its definitely up this year,
situation has extensive implications for higher education, according
to economics professor Bruce Reynolds.
think this is an issue for all of academia, he said. And
I think all of academia is just starting to get a hold of it and
saying Were shooting ourselves in the foot.
To qualify for visas, students have to prove they can support
themselves in the U.S. and that they will return to their country
of origin when their studies are completed.
idea of the program is for these students to take advantage of
the American education system and then take this knowledge back
to their country, not to be trained to join the U.S. workforce,
said Christopher Bentley, spokesman for the Bureau of Immigration
and Customs Enforcement, the division of the Office of Homeland
Courtney, another bureau spokesman, said there are many factors
in visa rejection and suggested that more Chinese students are
being turned down because more are applying.
have to prove without a doubt that they will not be a charge to
the United States, he said. Do they have family or
other ties in China? There are so many things to look at.