Dear Students, Faculty, Staff, Friends and Trustees:
As you know, Monmouth College is home to a strong contingent of international students, including several students from Syria. We are proud of these students, as we are of all of our students. Monmouth College has long been, and will continue to be, a place of high opportunity for all young people -- our domestic students of all backgrounds and our international students, no matter the name of the country stamped on the covers of their passports.
When we choose to join this community of teachers and learners, we ALL become Noble Scots. The core commitment of Monmouth College has always been, and will continue to be, to support fully ALL of our students to the successful completion of their degrees at the College, and as they move on to lives of learning, leadership, and service.
The recent executive order dealing with restrictions on immigration by individuals from certain nations has caused confusion and concern in many corners. We will continue to monitor this situation as it evolves. At the same time, offices across the campus will reach out to our international students to provide counsel and support. We are advising our international students from affected countries not to travel abroad until this situation becomes clearer.
Deans Timmerman and Masood will meet with our international students this evening. I am asking the Rev. Dr. Teri Ott and Director of International Student Services Erika Buckley to work even more closely with our international students during this period. We are consulting with the College's legal counsel to seek their insights. I will also be monitoring developments through our various institutional associations, including the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities.
Like our College, our nation has long stood as an example of opportunity for all. While preserving the security of our nation is of great importance, much of our security rests on our status as an example to the world of openness -- to those suffering oppression, to those seeking a better life in this land of freedom and opportunity.
People from around the globe have enriched our society -- and our College. Who among us can know which student -- present or future -- will find the cure to the incurable disease, develop the revolutionary new technology, create the profound new work of art, or rise to leadership? Who among us can know from whence they will come? I say, "Let them come to Monmouth College." Let us not give over to fear that can only weaken us. Let us remain this place of welcome and opportunity.
Clarence R. Wyatt