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Friday, Jul 20, 2018

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Ohio University reaffirms its commitment to diversity and community following recent Supreme Court ruling


Ohio University President M. Duane Nellis, Interim Executive Vice President and Provost Elizabeth Sayrs, Vice President of Diversity and Inclusion Gigi Secuban, Vice President for Student Affairs Jason Pina and Vice Provost of Global Affairs and International Studies Lorna Jean Edmonds shared the following message earlier today regarding OHIO’s commitment to the continued support of its University community, including and especially those from countries where federal actions at the border or elsewhere may leave them feeling as though the United States is not a welcoming place.



Dear Friends, 

We write in light of recent events that may have some in our Bobcat Family feeling uneasy about the future. Attracting and retaining talented students, faculty, and staff from all around the world is central to our academic mission and we are proud to have students from over 100 different countries represented on our campus. It is our fundamental belief as an institution that such diversity strengthens our community and the educational experience for all of our students. We proudly display this confluence of cultures at Ohio University each spring during International Week and we will continue to celebrate all cultures as we move forward.

Yesterday, the Supreme Court of the United States upheld President Donald Trump’s Proclamation No. 9645, Enhancing Vetting Capabilities and Processes for Detecting Attempted Entry Into the United States by Terrorists or Other Public Safety Threats, more commonly referred to as the “travel ban.” The proclamation that has been upheld is not the same as the executive order introduced last January soon after President Trump took office; the Proclamation that was upheld was issued on September 24, 2017, following lower court challenges throughout the country. 

For the past year, Ohio University has advocated for our international community members by publicly denouncing the travel ban, writing to our lawmakers, and signing petitions. The concerns we raised then for the welfare of our international students, faculty, and staff have not changed. While we would have hoped for a different outcome that would allow our students to continue their education worry-free and not alienate future students, faculty and staff from coming to Ohio University, the Supreme Court made its decision. Our decision remains to continue to support our University community, including and especially those from countries where federal actions at the border or elsewhere may leave them feeling as though the United States is not a welcoming place.


It is imperative that in these times of uncertainty, we reaffirm our support for our Fellow Bobcats and our continued commitment to creating a more inclusive, global community. 

YOU are welcome here!  

Most sincerely,

M. Duane Nellis
President

Elizabeth Sayrs
Interim Executive Vice President and Provost

Gigi Secuban
Vice President of Diversity and Inclusion

Jason Pina
Vice President for Student Affairs

Lorna Jean Edmonds
Vice Provost of Global Affairs and International Studies