Eager and Unabashed: The Road to Advocacy

May 18, 2016 | Topics: Advocacy and Public Policy

By Kashanna Fair

Map? Check. SmarTrip? Check. Hill appointments confirmed? Check. In March, at the 2016 NAFSA Advocacy Day, more than 100 NAFSA advocates, representing over 30 states and districts across the United States, came to Washington, D.C., to address topics integral to international education with their elected officials on Capitol Hill. Advocates shared the benefits of international students coming to the United States, the importance of American college students studying abroad, high-skilled immigration reform, and the need for betterment of U.S.-Cuba relations.... See More

Positive Momentum Builds to Restore Relations with Cuba

March 07, 2016 | Topics: Foreign Policy, Education Abroad

By Alan Fleming

U.S. academic travel to Cuba was decimated by severe executive branch directives in 2004. Consequently, most study abroad programs conducted by American institutions in Cuba shuttered, effectively abandoning one of the only avenues of understanding and collaboration that existed between our two countries.

The resulting 92% plummet in U.S. students studying in Cuba proved nearly fatal for Cuban exchange programs. The few programs that managed to remain open following the restrictions limped forward until January 2011, when NAFSA: Association of International Educators, the academic exchange community, and the larger coalition won a historic advocacy victory with the Obama Administration’s executive action to restore academic travel.

... See More

The Meaning of One Person, One Vote

December 10, 2015 | Topics: Advocacy and Public Policy

By Lisa Rosenberg

Yesterday, the Supreme Court heard arguments in a case that questioned whether everyone in a state’s congressional district has a right to representation, or if only eligible voters in that district do. Following the civil rights struggle for... See More

No Rest for Voting Rights Advocates

August 05, 2015 | Topics: Advocacy and Public Policy

By Lisa Rosenberg

As we mark the 50th anniversary of the Voting Rights Act tomorrow, it would be natural to assume that securing the right to vote for people of color could be crossed off America’s to-do list. Instead, it has become clear that the law’s roots are beginning to wither, threatening the integrity of the principles on which our democracy was founded.... See More

NAFSA at Summit of the Americas in Panama

April 14, 2015 | Topics: Foreign Policy

By Marlene M. Johnson

Obama and Castro make history; the 100,000 Strong in the Americas Innovation Fund gains momentum

I was invited to represent NAFSA at last week's CEO Summit of the Americas in Panama, which brought together corporate leaders... See More

White House Focuses on Study Abroad and Global Citizenship at Travel Bloggers Summit

December 11, 2014 | Topics: Advocacy and Public Policy, Education Abroad

By Marlene M. Johnson

Earlier this week, I made the quick three-block trip from the NAFSA office to the White House for an energizing afternoon with government officials, media representatives, and travel bloggers. As an important driver of public opinion, the media have the ability to use their influential voices to educate readers about the importance of study abroad and encourage more U.S. students to engage in meaningful travel. This was the goal of the White House Summit on Study Abroad and Global Citizenship, to raise awareness of the benefits of cross-cultural education and cultural exchange, while boosting international student mobility across borders.... See More

To the Next 100 Years of U.S.-China Exchange

December 04, 2014 | Topics: Visa Policy

By Qianlei Li

President Barack Obama recently announced that the United States and China will increase the validity of student and exchange visitor visas from 1 to 5 years, and the validity of short-term tourist and business visas from 1 to 10 years. This is really great news and I’m glad to share why this agreement is important from a student perspective.

To begin with, it saves time, money, and energy for Chinese students studying in the United States. Previously, Chinese students applying for an F-1 visa were only granted an entry visa that was valid for a year. If our visa expired and if we planned to travel outside the United States (perhaps for an internship or study opportunity, or to visit family back home for the holidays), we needed to renew our visa annually, outside of the United States, either in China, Mexico, or Canada, before returning to continue our studies.

... See More

Opportunity and Action are the Focus of the State of the Union

January 30, 2014 | Topics: Immigration Policy

By Katie O'Connell

In his State of the Union address, President Obama declared 2014 as a “year of action,” and reminded Congress that “…what most Americans want [is] for all of us in this chamber to focus on their lives, their hopes, their aspirations.” He shone a light on education by noting the importance of “….preparing tomorrow’s workforce, by guaranteeing every child access to a world-class education;” and he again asked Congress to take up commonsense immigration... See More