Statement on Executive Order: Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States

The University of South Carolina is committed to producing 21st century graduates who are classically educated; innovative and creative; civically engaged; workforce ready; and, prepared to be community leaders here in the Palmetto State, across the country or around the world. In an increasingly complex and interdependent society, we firmly believe this means promoting the values of citizenship, civility and tolerance as exemplified in the Carolinian Creed. We also believe that our international students, faculty and staff—representing more than 100 countries—play a central role in embodying and promoting these core values.

Since the executive order was signed on January 27, we have worked closely with national and international organizations to make sure our understanding of this rapidly unfolding situation is as accurate and up-to-date as can be. We have been in contact with each member of the Carolina Family from the impacted countries to answer questions and offer guidance to the best of our ability; and, most importantly, to make clear that we value their presence on our campus and are committed to their safety and success regardless of religion, ethnicity or national origin.

USC has joined the American Council on Education, and other institutions from across the country, in a letter to Secretary John Kelly, Department of Homeland Security. The letter affirms our support for safeguarding our nation and our jointly held believe that international exchange strengthens our universities, our economy and indeed our country. We ask the Secretary to work with higher education to craft policies that keep us safe while maintaining the United States’ position as a destination of choice for scholars from across the globe.

As Carolinians, we know that learning humanizes character and does not permit it to be cruel. As such, let us debate vigorously yet civilly. Let’s stand for justice and the rule of law. Let’s be an example for the world in how to thrive in a wonderfully diverse community, embracing each other for the betterment of all.

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