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International students in Colorado no longer at risk for deportation if colleges move to online-only instruction

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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) -- A new federal policy that would have potentially forced international students to leave the country or risk deportation if their universities switch to online-only courses has been rescinded.

The policy was just issued by U.S. Customs and Immigration and could have impacted more than 11,000 students in Colorado. But on Tuesday, President Donald Trump's administration announced that the rule wouldn't go into place.

The announcement came amid a lawsuit by over a dozen states and multiple higher education institutions, including the University of Colorado.

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But until that happens, they’re banking on in-person or hybrid courses to keep those international students in the U.S.

“We’re hoping this ruling won’t affect us, but still, it’s caused a lot of confusion and concern amongst our students," says Kevin McConnellogue, Vice President for Communication for the University of Colorado.

The University of Colorado is planning on opening all four of their campuses come fall, which offers some protection to their international students.

“Any of the portion of the coursework they’re taking, if it’s in person, then this ruling won’t apply to them,” says McConnellogue.

The return to in-person instruction will also work to benefit their international who returned to their home country amid the pandemic.

"If an international student today, wanted to return to Colorado ... if they have the appropriate visa, they can do that," says McConnellogue.

However, should Governor Jared Polis order schools to return to an online-only format at any time during the academic school year, international students would be at risk of deportation once again.

“At the end of the day, our campuses and our students have to follow the la, but I think some of the challenges to that law are going to play out here in the coming weeks," says McConnellogue.

The Colorado Attorney General, along with 16 other states, are suing the Department of Homeland Security and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement over the ruling.

Local News / News

Mia Villanueva

Mia is a weekday reporter for Good Morning Colorado. Learn more about Mia here.



  1. If it is so safe to open schools why are Colleges not opening and going to online teaching? These are children as well. At what age for purposes of covid-19 do children become adults and are not immune and are contagious?

    1. Liberals like to think 5 year olds are adults…..for adult activities. But you can’t be an adult at 18!!!!

    2. It has a lot to do with the fact that universities are largely privately funded by ripping people off via outlandish tuition fees. Aswhere the MangöFührer is attempting to threaten public schools that he and the DërpRicht will withhold federal funds if they don’t bend to his whims.

  2. So why would foreign student need to be in the US to attend online courses? Does the internet not reach outside the US?

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