Federal Statement in Support of International Education

Policy should boost international student exchange, especially between US and China

The U.S. Departments of State and Education have issued a Joint Statement of Principles in Support of International Education, with support from the Departments of Commerce and Homeland Security, to encourage the sector to recover and build back better after the prior administration’s restrictions on student visas and the pandemic-induced shutdowns.

The statement is the first public affirmation of federal support for international education in over 20 years. The U.S. Departments of State and Education have committed to undertaking actions to support a renewed focus on international education, with key principles of support, including:

  • A coordinated national approach to international education, including study abroad for Americans, international students on U.S. campuses, and the internationalization of U.S. campuses and classrooms.
  • A welcoming environment for international students coming to the U.S., encouraging a diversity of participants, disciplines, and types of schools and higher education institutions where they can choose to study, teach, or contribute to research.
  • Encouragement for U.S. students, researchers, scholars, and educators who reflect the diversity of the U.S. population to pursue overseas study, internships, research, and other international experiences.
  • Promotion of expanded access to international education, including using technology where in-person experiences are not feasible, to connect U.S. students, researchers, scholars, and educators with their peers abroad.
  • Partnerships of the U.S. government with higher education institutions, schools, state, and local governments, the business community, and others to support international education.

These principles have been established to help welcome international students to the U.S. and to develop the global and cultural competencies Americans need to operate internationally. The statement indicates a marked change of direction in policy, which should be of particular interest to the many Chinese students looking to study in the U.S. as well as Americans looking to study in China.

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