University of Tulsa Interim President Janet Levit issued a statement Friday in response to a recent announcement from Immigration and Customs Enforcement that would require international students at universities offering online-only courses in response to the COVID-19 pandemic to leave the country.
"International students have always played an important role in campus life at The University of Tulsa, contributing to classroom experiences, research, culture and diversity," Levit said. "TU would not be the strong, inclusive institution that it is without the vibrancy that international students bring to Tulsa, and we view as highly counterproductive any policy that jeopardizes the ability of these bright scholars to attend TU and share their worldviews with our domestic students."
"Fortunately, this ruling may not directly affect those attending The University of Tulsa. TU is implementing rigorous safety protocols to ensure a healthy return to on-campus learning to the fullest extent possible this fall while also realizing that COVID-19 infections may require us to return to virtual classrooms at some point."
The statement concludes: "Despite the careful precautions being made to allow students to return to our campus, we view this policy as unfairly and unnecessarily targeting international students during a global pandemic. TU stands with ALL of our students – as well as those at other American universities – and calls on the federal government to rescind this disturbing policy shift before it creates any further harm."
StateImpact's Robby Korth reported that the University of Oklahoma and Oklahoma State University had previously issued their own response to the ICE policy.
TU holds Public Radio Tulsa's broadcast license.