ICE’s ruling is a staggering blow to the US’s computer science departments

Universities across the US stand to lose the lifeblood of key science and technology programs after the Trump administration announced earlier this week that international students cannot stay in the country if the institutions they attend are only offering online classes.

International students make up the bulk of enrollment in graduate computer science and engineering programs. In addition to paying tuition, these students help professors conduct research, teach undergraduates, and help retain top faculty.

The new policy may prompt some students to postpone their education or drop out, cutting enrollment for the fall semester and even future academic years. It could also accelerate the trend of foreign students choosing countries like China and Canada over the US, and reduce the number of graduates in key fields where job applicants are already scarce.

“This is not a necessary policy at all,” said Stuart Anderson, the executive director of the National Foundation

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