University of Massachusetts Amherst Bans Iranian National Students from Taking Courses in Engineering and Science

© Provided by The Verge
© Provided by The Verge

In what it claims to be an attempt to begin complying with a more than two-year-old US law, the University of Massachusetts Amherst has said that it will no longer allow Iranian citizens to enroll in many of its science and engineering programs. The schools says that the policy is “unfortunate” but necessary to comply with sanctions against Iran. However, the law that it cites doesn’t actually appear to require this. The university references the “Iran Threat Reduction and Syria Human Rights Act of 2012,” which prohibits Iranian citizens from receiving US visas if they intend to attend college and then return to Iran to work in energy, nuclear, or related fields.

This does not appear to be a correct interpretation of US law

That’s quite different from supposedly banning schools from teaching subjects to certain students, which it does not appear to actually do. “US law does not prohibit qualified Iranian nationals coming to the United States for education in science and engineering,” a State Department official tells the Boston Globe. “Each application is reviewed on a case-by-case basis.” Basically, if someone has a visa, they should be good to go — it doesn’t appear that it’s up to the college to enforce this policy.

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Source: The Verge | Jacob Kastrenakes

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