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Friday, March 01, 2024
Chancellor Rebecca Blank said UW-Madison will continue to monitor how the Trump administration’s new order to bar immigrant individuals from the U.S. will affect UW-Madison students, faculty and staff in a statement released Monday.

Chancellor Rebecca Blank said UW-Madison will continue to monitor how the Trump administration’s new order to bar immigrant individuals from the U.S. will affect UW-Madison students, faculty and staff in a statement released Monday.

UW student possibly unable to return to U.S. following Trump's executive order

Roughly 90 other students, staff affected by the order, advised not to travel outside of U.S.

Chancellor Rebecca Blank called on the Trump administration to reconsider the new order that stops individuals from certain countries from returning to the U.S. in a statement released Monday.

UW-Madison spokesperson Meredith McGlone said 88 students, faculty and staff are affected by the order—72 of the individuals are students. 

McGlone said UW-Madison is aware of one student whose travel plans back to the U.S. may be impacted by the executive order. It is not an emergency situation. The university is working with the student, and has contacted all 88 individuals who may be affected as well. 

She said this means the individuals hold visas or a similar status and are from the countries specified in the order, which include Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen.

UW-Madison will join the Association of American Universities and the Association of Public and Land Grant Universities in their stance against the order. Blank said in the statement the university shares Trump’s commitment to protect the U.S., but the administration must ensure its policy does not keep out who have good reasons to travel, including UW-Madison international students, faculty and staff.

“This diversity is a source of strength and innovation and it enhances our research, teaching and outreach,” Blank said in the statement. “It also drives the Wisconsin Idea through the ideals of sharing knowledge and building global partnerships.”

Blank also called on the Trump administration to find a balanced approach that does not interfere with higher education systems and democracy.

In the statement, Blank committed to monitoring the situation and keeping international individuals on campus informed. She also promised UW-Madison will not release immigration status information about individuals unless required to do so under law, and UW-Madison Police Department will not engage in immigration enforcement.

Blank’s statement follows the circulation of a petition by UW-Madison students on social media that called on the chancellor to ensure the safety of immigrants on campus.

UW-Madison freshman Rena Newman created the petition. It went live Saturday and had more than 1,100 signatures as of Monday, 70 percent of which came from students.

Newman said Blank’s statement is half of what they requested in the statement.

“It's a good statement, I’m glad she released it,” Newman said. “But the petition is actually specifically talking about how the faculty is going to address [Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals] students … the lack of mentioning of DACA students is, to me, troubling.”

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They reached out to Dreamer’s Club of Madison and will move forward with the petition after hearing from the group. Newman plans to send the petition and a letter to the chancellor that emphasizes the necessity of acknowledging undocumented students and showing support for DACA students.

UW System President Ray Cross released a statement that said all students across the UW System are important, and echoed Blank’s promise to closely monitor the situation.

UW-Madison International Student Services tweeted several messages. They encouraged international students with questions to speak to an ISS staff member, and stated they had contacted students who are citizens of affected countries to offer support and travel recommendations.

UPDATE Jan. 28, 7:50 p.m. This story was updated to include additional statements from UW administration and a UW-Madison student. 

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