Letter from the President: Brown’s response to court’s ruling on travel ban

University President Christina Paxson said the Supreme Court's decision to uphold travel restrictions will impact the ability for international students and scholars to come to American universities to contribute to research, discovery and innovation.

PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] — On Wednesday, June 27, Brown President Christina Paxson wrote to the University community about the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to uphold travel restrictions on individuals from seven countries. Below is the text of her letter.

Dear Members of the Brown Community,

On June 26, the U.S. Supreme Court overruled a challenge to President Trump’s Executive Order restricting the mobility of individuals from seven countries (Iran, Libya, North Korea, Somalia, Syria, Venezuela, and Yemen) to the United States.

The University is deeply concerned that this ruling will be used to prevent students and scholars from coming to this country. While we recognize and appreciate the need for careful attention to national security — the rationale the Trump administration provided for the travel limitations — we feel strongly that the visa system should take into account the significant contributions of international students and scholars to our broader global community in the areas of research, discovery and innovation.

As you know, Brown, among many other U.S. universities, has been especially vocal about the need to protect the flow of international scholars to the United States. Dating back to January 2017, Brown appealed to members of Congress for immigration reform and joined public statements from the Association of American Universities, the American Association for the Advancement of Science and other groups of peer universities calling for immigration policies that honor the founding principles of the United States. The University signed multiple legal briefs supporting challenges to the travel ban, and we established new resources for our international students and scholars.

The University remains committed to supporting our international community. Individuals from the countries named in the Executive Order will continue to have access to immigration and legal advising, and we are encouraging our international students and scholars to contact Brown’s Office of International Student & Scholar Services (OISSS) for any visa and compliance related matters. OISSS and the Office of Global Engagement are also reaching out to incoming students from the affected countries to manage how this ruling may affect their travel and arrival on campus.

We encourage all international students to contact the Office of Global Engagement with any questions related to this order or other concerns. In addition, we invite the campus community to attend a community gathering today to share concerns about this decision and offer community support to our international students, faculty and staff.  

At Brown, we continue to celebrate the positive impact that all of our international students and scholars make to American Higher Education and to the innovation, economic vitality and competitiveness of our country. We will continue to work to attract talented students and scholars from around the globe to Brown.


Christina Paxson

Contact Information
Office of International Student & Scholar Services (OISSS): 401-863-2427
Office of Global Engagement (OGE): 401-863-1300