U.S. Reportedly Considered Nixing Visas for Chinese Students Even Amid Sinking International Grad Enrollment

By The New England Council

DC Shuttle …

Reports of Proposed Plan to Limit Chinese Students. Reports last week indicated that earlier this year, the White House considered eliminating student visas for Chinese students. According to the reports, advisers encouraged President Donald Trump to stop providing student visas to Chinese nationals, but the proposal was shelved over concerns about its economic and diplomatic impact. The Financial Times reports.

International Graduate Student Enrollment Down. First-time international graduate enrollments in U.S. institutions fell 3.7% from fall 2016 to fall 2017, according to a new report from the Council of Graduate Schools, Inside Higher Ed reports.

Gainful Employment and Borrower Defense Delayed. The U.S. Department of Education is delaying the release of updated rules on gainful employment and borrowers defense. The department said last week it will miss a deadline to release final regulations to replace the borrower defense and gainful employment rules implemented by the Obama administration. Both rules were expected to be released by Nov. 1. By missing the deadline, the earliest date the new rules could go into effect would be July 1, 2020. The borrower defense rule was designed to assist student borrowers in determining their eligibility for loan forgiveness and prevent predatory institutions from taking advantage of prospective students. It was finalized in 2016 and scheduled to take effect in July 2017. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos postponed the effective date and the department then proposed revisions to the rule. Bloomberg reports on the latest delay and Inside Higher Ed has more.

Grants Available for College Students Affected by Hurricane Florence. The Department of Education announced that college students affected by Hurricane Florence could be eligible for grants totaling $2.8 million. The grants will go to students who are deemed financially needy, with priority to those who currently receive Pell Grants. The emergency money was made available by the Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant program, the News and Observer reports.

Administration to Probe Gender Bathroom Use Rules. The Trump administration announced last week that it will investigate schools’ bathroom gender responses. The administration said it will investigate whether a Georgia school district’s policy allowing students to choose the bathroom corresponding with their gender identity contributed to a “hostile environment” for female students. The question is part of a larger review of the district’s response to the sexual assault of a 5-year-old girl in a school bathroom. The U.S. Education Department sent a letter saying it would investigate, which was circulated last week, Inside Higher Ed reports.

WSJ Report Says Companies Providing More Education Benefits. The Wall Street Journal reported that as companies compete for workers in the tightest labor market in years, they’re offering new education benefits like college coaching and student loan repayments to recruit employees.

We publish the DC Shuttle each week featuring higher ed news from Washington collected by the New England Council, of which NEBHE is a member. This edition is drawn from the Higher Education Update in the Council’s Weekly Washington Report of Oct. 9, 2018. For more information, please visit: www.newenglandcouncil.com.

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