ACE, Higher Ed Groups Submit Comments on Proposed H-1B Rule Changes January 08, 2024 Section 1 ContentIn other student visa news, State Department grants extension of the flexibility for waivers for some in-person interviewsACE and a coalition of higher education associations have submitted comments to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) in response to the proposed rule “Modernizing H-1B Requirements, Providing Flexibility in the F-1 Program, and Program Improvements Affecting Other Nonimmigrant Workers.” The groups are requesting a reconsideration of the proposed changes, given the importance of H-1B visa regulations in reflecting the evolving dynamics of professional education and the modern workforce.The H-1B is a temporary (nonimmigrant) visa category that allows employers to petition for highly educated foreign professionals to work in “specialty occupations” that require at least a bachelor’s degree or the equivalent, typically in fields such as mathematics, engineering, technology, and medical sciences. The initial duration of an H-1B visa classification is usually three years, which may be extended for a maximum of six years.In the letter addressed to Division Chief Charles L. Nimick at the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, the organizations express appreciation for the administration’s efforts to modernize and improve the H-1B system, which significantly impacts colleges and universities as both employers and educators of international students. Tens of thousands of H-1B visa holders are employed by colleges and universities, contributing to groundbreaking research, offering specialized training programs, providing medical services, and supporting the infrastructure necessary for these institutions’ operations.The associations express support for several provisions within the proposed rule, but also outline significant concerns about proposed changes to the definition of a “specialty occupation” and the determination of a “specific specialty requirement.” They argue that these changes would negatively impact the ability to attract a broad group of candidates for faculty positions and narrow the pipeline for growth in high- and emerging-technology fields.State Department Extends Flexibility for Certain In-Person Visa InterviewsACE and other associations sent a request last month to Secretary of State Antony Blinken urging the State Department to extend and make permanent the current authority to waive the in-person interview requirement for certain nonimmigrant visa applicants.The flexibilities have allowed for faster processing for some international students and scholars applying for F-1 and J-1 visas to study and complete research in the United States.ACE President Ted Mitchell received a response Dec. 21 that State would extend the flexibility for a waiver to certain applicants, specifically those who have previously held the same visa and have not had a previous rejection. The guidance and announcement of the extension can be found here. Section 2 Content Section 3 Content Section 4 Content Section 5 Content Section 6 Content Button Content Rail Content 1 Rail Content 2 Rail Content 3 Related Podcast February 17, 2023 In this live episode, hosts Jon Fansmith and Sarah Spreitzer take audience questions on a range of topics, from the Education Department moving quickly on new regulations to the House hearing on the “crisis” in American education to ChatGPT. Read More Podcast February 17, 2023 dotEDU Live: New Rules from ED, Culture War Rhetoric Ramps Up, the End of the COVID Emergency, More Statement December 21, 2022 We condemn in the strongest possible terms the decision by the government of Afghanistan to ban women from studying at all public and private universities. Read More Statement December 21, 2022 Statement by ACE President Ted Mitchell on Afghan Government Banning Women from Higher Education Podcast December 8, 2022 Political activist Tyler Montague and ACE’s Derrick Anderson visit the podcast to talk about Arizona’s newly passed Proposition 308, which gives in-state tuition for non-citizen residents of the state. Read More Podcast December 8, 2022 States Step in as Federal Action on Dreamers Goes Nowhere News November 18, 2022 ACE and over 60 other higher education associations sent a letter Nov. 17 to House and Senate leaders urging them to make protecting Dreamers and the DACA program a priority, given recent court decisions declaring DACA illegal. Read More News November 18, 2022 ACE, Higher Ed Groups: Pass Legislation Now to Protect Dreamers News October 17, 2022 The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled yesterday that the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program was not lawful but preserved the district court’s stay, which permits current enrollees to continue renewing their status. Read More News October 17, 2022 Appeals Court Says DACA Is Illegal but Keeps Program Alive Statement October 6, 2022 We are dismayed that this ruling by the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals continues to force hundreds of thousands of outstanding young Dreamers to live in fear and uncertainty. Read More Statement October 6, 2022 Statement by ACE President Ted Mitchell on Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals DACA Ruling News August 30, 2022 The Biden administration last week released the final version of regulations aiming to strengthen the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Read More News August 30, 2022 Final DACA Regulations Released by Biden Administration Statement We applaud this action by the Biden administration to preserve and fortify the existing Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. Read More Statement Statement by ACE President Ted Mitchell on Final DACA Regulations News June 13, 2022 June 15 marks 10 years since President Barack Obama announced an executive memorandum creating DACA, an initiative that has provided some protection and work authorization for over 800,000 undocumented immigrants brought to the United States as children. Read More News June 13, 2022 DACA Is Now 10 Years Old. What Does the Future Hold? Podcast March 25, 2022 ACE Senior Vice President Terry Hartle joins host Sarah Spreitzer to discuss Congress’s last-minute push to pass the FY 2022 omnibus spending package and what it means for higher education ED's final negotiated rulemaking session. Read More Podcast March 25, 2022 Congress Springs Forward and Passes Spending Bill; New Regulations Coming News March 7, 2022 The Biden administration has announced that it will allow Ukrainians who are in the United States as of March 1 to remain in the country for 18 months under a designation known as Temporary Protected Status. Read More News March 7, 2022 Biden Administration Extends Temporary Protected Status to Ukrainians in the U.S. News January 24, 2022 The White House has announced a number of positive changes to programs for international students and scholars in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). Read More News January 24, 2022 DHS, State Announce Regulatory Changes to Attract More International Students and Scholars News January 4, 2022 In good news for international students, the Department of State announced before the holiday break that consular offices would have more flexibility in determining non-immigrant intent for F-1 and M-1 student visa applicants Read More News January 4, 2022 Biden Administration Revises Regulations to Ease Entry for International Students News December 17, 2021 The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency has granted an extension to April 30, 2022, of the COVID-19 related flexibilities related to Form I-9 compliance. Read More News December 17, 2021 Federal Government Extends I-9 Compliance Flexibility Podcast December 16, 2021 ACE Senior Vice President Terry Hartle reviews the higher education policy successes and failures of 2021, and what we can expect from Congress and the administration in 2022. Read More Podcast December 16, 2021 2021 in Higher Education Policy (A Good Year, Not a Great One) News November 29, 2021 ACE and 45 other higher education associations have submitted sent comments to the Department of Homeland Security on the draft rules released in September to strengthen the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. Read More News November 29, 2021 ACE, 45 Other Groups Praise Biden Administration’s Effort to “Protect and Fortify” DACA Podcast November 19, 2021 In this live conversation, hosts Jon Fansmith and Sarah Spreitzer discuss the status of the Build Back Better Act and more as Congress pushes toward the end of the year with a lengthy to-do list. Read More Podcast November 19, 2021 End of Year Countdown: What’s on the Congressional Agenda for Students and Colleges Statement November 15, 2021 Higher education associations issued a statement urging the U.S. government to partner with the higher education community to develop and implement a national strategy to return international student enrollment and exchanges to pre-COVID 19 numbers. Read More Statement November 15, 2021 U.S. Higher Education Community Calls for a Return to Pre-COVID 19 International Student Enrollment Numbers News November 15, 2021 ACE and seven other organizations issued a statement urging the federal government to engage in efforts with the higher education community to return international student enrollment to pre-pandemic numbers and support policies that encourage growth. Read More News November 15, 2021 Higher Education Organizations Call for Federal Support of International Students Podcast November 4, 2021 With the House heading toward a vote on the Biden administration’s domestic spending plan, the hosts talk about what is in the bill for higher education and speak with Morgan Taylor about ACE’s latest Pulse Point survey of college presidents. Read More Podcast November 4, 2021 Higher Ed Waits for Congress to Act; ACE Takes Pulse of College Presidents Podcast October 21, 2021 he hosts look at what we know so far about the higher ed provisions in the budget reconciliation bill, the future of Public Service Loan Forgiveness, and the president's order mandating COVID-19 vaccinations for federal contractors. Read More Podcast October 21, 2021 Capitol Hill Fall Showdown: Will Higher Ed Get Left Behind?