To our Washington University community:
I am writing about the immigration actions stemming from the executive order signed by the President on Friday. I am mindful of the need to maintain national security. But this order has caused adverse effects on our university community and the United States research community as a whole. It is having a very direct, negative impact on specific members of our community and the executive order should be withdrawn.
I strongly support the statement from the Association of American Universities, of which we are a member. In addition to sharing concern about the executive order, we call upon the President and his administration to make clear to the world that the United States continues to welcome the most talented individuals from all countries to teach, study and carry out research and scholarship at our universities. Through the combined AAU efforts, and my own personal outreach to members of Congress, we are making clear our very serious concerns about these issues. If you are motivated to do so, I encourage you to engage in the national conversation and contact your elected officials and other leaders making these decisions to share your views.
We are working to get clarification regarding the full implications of the executive order. In the meantime, I strongly recommend that any students, faculty or staff from a country specified in the order consult with our Office of International Students and Scholars (OISS) before traveling outside the United States.
I reiterate the sentiment I shared in December. Washington University must be a place where we draw strength through our differences, and where all feel welcomed, respected and included. We value a long tradition of drawing talented people from all around the world to our community, and we must continue to vigorously encourage the open exchange of ideas and perspectives.
Mark S. Wrighton