DULUTH, MN-- A proposal made this week by the Trump administration may have an impact on the educational opportunities for international students in the Northland.
The proposal states if colleges aren't providing in-person classes due to the pandemic, those students will have to find a new school or go back to their home country.
"I think this is really unfortunate because we already have so many of our students who are under stress economically, financially," said Susanna Pelayo-Woodward, the Director of UMD's Office of Diversity and Inclusion. "Some of our students aren't even able to go back because many countries are still closed."
Schools across the Twin Ports are working to create a mix of both in-person and online courses.
Daniel Fanning, Vice President of Lake Superior College said, "We're calling it the hybrid option where you may start on campus but ultimately end back online. More importantly, give those students those options depending on what works for their schedule."
The proposal impacts high schools as well.
Marshall School, which serves 4th through 12th graders, says its mission is to make students global citizens.
"We're such a better place for being a global school. We've been a global school for 20 years. That's what sad about this, is it feels as if they're being used as political chess pieces," said Head of the school Kevin Breen.
Christa Knudsen, Director of International Programs adds, "They're bringing different ideas, different ways of learning and thinking. And we're very proud of that. We think in the big picture we think it makes the world a safer more peaceful place. So really to put an end to that, it's all so troubling."
All have said bringing international students to the Twin Ports not only helps the colleges but the community.
"The huge volume and the richness they bring. The exchange of ideas and cultures" said Pelayo-Woodward.
Several Ivy League colleges have filed lawsuits against President Trump and the proposal.
The state of California is also suing the President.