ASSU Executive Cabinet coordinates international-student and disability advocacy

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The Associated Students of Stanford University (ASSU) Executive Cabinet advocated for the circulation of a public comment campaign for international students regarding a proposed federal rule related to visas during its Saturday meeting.

The proposed rule creates a fixed period of stay for international students — and places a two-year stay limit on students from countries with high visa overstay rates — but allows them to legally extend their stay in the United States or reapply for admission, according to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). The Graduate Student Council has denounced the rule, with one council co-chair calling the process by which the countries are chosen “highly discriminatory.”

Gülin Ustabas ’21, ASSU co-director of international student advocacy, sought to emphasize the importance of the Stanford community submitting comments and emails to their local representatives. 

“We want to submit as many comments as possible, especially to the DHS, as it is better to see a lot of domestic opposition to the rule,” Ustabas said. 

Bechtel International Center also wrote in a statement on their website that they are “working with the President and Provost’s office, the Office of Government Affairs, peer institutions and our professional associations to develop a formal comment in opposition to the DHS proposal.”

Tilly Griffiths ’22, ASSU co-chair of disability advocacy, said that a survey has been released in partnership with the Office of Accessible Education to get a sense of potential changes to be made for the academic well-being of the disability community.

“We want to ensure whatever things that need to be changed can be done for winter, spring or however long we are in remote learning situations,” Griffiths said.

The Cabinet also discussed their listening session related to affordability, calling it “super helpful,” and meetings with administrators about the COVID-19 response regarding the Basic Needs coalition and Graduate Student Advisory Committee. 

Contact Jordan John Lee at jjslee22 ‘at’ stanford.edu.

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Jordan John Lee ’22 studies Biology and Classics and is a writer for the News and Sports sections of The Daily. He enjoys watching tennis, gymnastics, and his hometown LA sports, the Lakers and Dodgers. He loves all forms of coffee and loves to listen to new music! Contact him at jjslee22 ‘at’ stanford.edu.