A Message to the Campus Community
Dear campus community,
In November I shared a message with the campus community expressing the University’s unwavering commitment to diversity -- anchored in our strong values of access and inclusiveness -- and to creating a campus environment that welcomes all. I want to reaffirm that the University is resolute on this stance.
President Donald Trump’s recent Executive Order (see full text in this New York Times report) places a moratorium on issuing any visas to citizens of Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen or to those who were born in one of these countries for the next 90 days. During this 90-day period, we advise current international students or scholars from these countries not to travel outside the United States unless absolutely necessary. Even after the 90-day period is complete, we are not sure how the visa or port of entry requirements may change and we are urging caution.
Stony Brook University is experiencing the full effect of this order firsthand, as the President of our Graduate Student Organization, Vahideh Rasekhi, pursuing a PhD in Linguistics, was detained at JFK Airport after arriving from a layover flight in Ukraine enroute from visiting her family in Iran. The order apparently went into effect after her travels began. Fortunately Vahideh was not forced to leave, and we have been told that she will be released later today.
As this Executive Order is being interpreted by immigration authorities, I want to provide you with information and to offer support, as Stony Brook labors through the new rules governing visas and entry to the United States.
If you have a specific issue or immediate question related to the Executive Order, please contact the Stony Brook University Visa and Immigration Services Office (VISO) located in Room E5310 of the Melville Library. Representatives will be on hand during business hours Monday-Friday, 8:30-5:00. After business hours, please email your questions to VIS@stonybrook.edu, which will be continuously monitored by VISO staff. Emails sent to this address should include your name, student ID number, and contact information. As additional updates and information are available, VIS will update stonybrook.edu/visa. All updates will also be posted to the Stony Brook University Visa and Immigration Services Facebook page.
The University will host an information session with legal experts from New York law firm Barst, Mukamal, & Kleiner, on Wednesday, February 1 from 1pm - 2:30pm in the Wang Center Theater. These experts will address, interpret and answer general questions about the Executive Order. Representatives from the offices of Visa and Immigration Services and Dean of Students will also be on hand to offer support and answer questions.
There are additional campus resources which are available to assist you, including the Counseling Center, staff within the Office of Student Affairs, and the Employee Assistance Program. Please feel free to contact any of these offices as listed below:
Office of the Dean of Students
Student Activities Center, Room 222
Counseling & Psychological Services (CAPS)
Student Health Center, 2nd Floor
631.632.6720 (24/7 hotline)
Employee Assistance Program
W0505 Melville Library
EAP Coordinators are available by appointment between7:30AM and 3:30PM, Monday through Friday. After hours services are available through the NYS EAP 24 hour hotline 800.822.0244
Stony Brook University is a leading global university devoted to excellence and innovation. Our commitment to the entire campus community is to continue to dedicate our efforts to maintaining this standing now and in the future.
Samuel L. Stanley Jr., MD