MIT Joins Amicus Brief Concerning the Department of Homeland Security’s August 2018 “Unlawful Presence” Memorandum regarding F, J, and M Visa Holders

April 2019

On December 21, 2018, MIT joined an amicus brief with 64 other institutions of higher education supporting Plaintiffs in the case captioned Guilford College, et al. v. Kirstjen Nielsen, et al. in the United States District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina.

The lawsuit challenges the Department of Homeland Security’s August 9, 2018 Policy Memorandum which changed the calculation of unlawful presence for F, J, and M visa holders, and therefore threatens to subject thousands of these visa holders to three and ten year bans to reenter the U.S. for reasons that are frequently outside of the visa holder’s control. The amicus brief, which supports Plaintiffs’ Motion for Preliminary Injunction and Partial Summary Judgment, describes the significant benefits that the United States receives from the tens of thousands of international students and scholars that attend U.S. institutions under the F, J, and M Visa Programs; and explains how the new rule for calculating unlawful presence will harm not only the international students and scholars themselves, but also American higher education. You can read the Department of Homeland Security’s Policy Memo here, and the amicus brief here.