Students Rally At OU To Ensure International Student Safety

Monday, July 13th 2020, 6:34 pm
By: Tevis Hillis

NORMAN, Okla. -

After the federal government released new guidelines regarding international students, students at the University of Oklahoma are rallying to ensure international students can remain in the U.S.

"I will be uprooting my entire life, and that is heartbreaking," said one international student from England, Bryony Puxley.

As a graduate student who has made her life in Norman, she said it's a terrifying thought to be forced to return to her home country.

"We felt hopeless, we felt useless, we get breathless, we felt vulnerable," said Tatenda N.C Dzvimbo, an international student.

Students voiced their concerns Mondayn morning at a rally at the Parrington Oval. The list began with a request to the University of Oklahoma, which would guarantee an in-person option to satisfy international students' new federal guidelines.

If OU moves to a predominantly online course load, students asked for an in-person session to be available, tuition and fees included.

Part of the university's response has been creating a task force to work with international students.

President Joseph Harroz said to international students in a letter: “you belong here, and we will do everything we can to keep you here.”

"I do know I can trust my university," Amer Begovic, the President of OU's Student International Advisory Committee. "They have our back, and I know they will help us in any way they can."

The university announced it has joined 180 schools throughout the country to support a legal complaint against the U.S. Department of Homeland security.