SUT Says Will Take Students Accepted in 20 US Universities

Over 50% of all Iranians enrolled in American universities are studying in STEM programs with women constituting one-third, and about 60% are studying in post-graduate or PhD levels
SUT Says Will Take Students  Accepted in 20 US UniversitiesSUT Says Will Take Students  Accepted in 20 US Universities

Sharif University of Technology (SUT) said on Thursday it will admit Iranian students studying in the US or had enrolled in the 20 top universities in the US, who are affected by US President Donald Trump’s discriminatory executive order on the travel ban for Iran.

The top ranking university in engineering and physical sciences said last week that it would admit students who have already received admission with scholarships for graduate and post-graduate studies at top 20 universities in the US, the list of which is available on the SUT website, according to Qasem Miremadi, director of graduate education.

In the aftermath of the Trump administration’s executive order temporarily banning people from seven Muslim-majority countries to the United States, universities and scholars in Iran are assessing the implications of the restrictions on students.

“Students who have lost the opportunity to study in the US this year can send their documents to SUT by March 5 and join the academic programs immediately,” he was quoted by state broadcaster IRIB as saying. They will also receive financial aid from the university.

The directive will not apply to students who have admissions to other universities in the US, or those admitted through their own financial resources.

SUT is a public research university located in the Tarasht neighborhood in western Tehran close to Azadi Square. It also has an international campus in Kish, a resort island in the Persian Gulf.

Iran is one of the countries on Trump’s ban list which bans visitors from Iraq, Syria, Sudan, Somalia, Libya and Yemen from entering the United States for 90 days.

During the 2015-16 academic year, there were 12,000 students from Iran studying at US universities—far more than the six other banned countries which sent fewer than 2,000 students each.

Iran was placed 11th in the list of countries sending the highest number of international students to the US for the 2015-2016 academic year. 

The Washington Institute for Near East Policy has cited the share of Iranian students (1%) among all foreign students in the US “small, but significant” since they comprise the second leading student body (79% of all foreign enrollments) in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) programs after India (80%).

The institute also says that over 50% of all Iranians enrolled in universities are studying in STEM programs with women constituting one-third of the total. About 60% of all Iranians are studying in post-graduate or PhD levels, while 35% are graduate students. Also, due to excellence in education, 55% of them receive full funding from the designated university.

Although students from the affected countries cannot receive visas now to enter the US as long as Trump’s executive order is in place, no American universities have asked students from the banned countries to refrain from applying or cancelled their applications, or expelled any student. On the contrary, universities continue to encourage them to complete their application process and wait for what happens in the 90 days, while keeping their options open.

Opportunities in Canadian Varsities

On Friday, two universities in Canada waved admission application fees for citizens of the seven countries affected by the US travel ban. The move by University of Alberta and University of Calgary is meant to “ensure students have every opportunity to pursue or complete their studies,” Calgary officials said in a statement.

“This includes new applicants and those who are currently in the US who wish to transfer or continue their studies as a visiting student.” Applying for admission at universities in Canada can cost up to $145.

Canadian universities issued a statement recently condemning the ban and the negative effects it will have on students, staff, visiting academics and academia in general.

In pointed tweets a day after Trump put a four-month hold on allowing refugees into the US and temporarily barred travelers from the seven countries, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said refugees were welcome in Canada.

“To those fleeing persecution, terror and war, Canadians will welcome you, regardless of your faith. Diversity is our strength,” he wrote on his official twitter account.    

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