It’s been one day since The Signal first reported of Georgia State student Rakhaa Noaman who is stuck at an airport in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, along with her sister, because of President Donald Trump’s travel ban. Noaman said she was trying to return to Atlanta to finish her Respiratory Therapy degree at Georgia State.
On Monday, Jan. 30, Georgia State University President Mark Becker issued a statement on the president’s executive order and its effects, assuring the student body the university’s Office of International Student and Scholar Initiatives (OISS) is in communications with Noaman, saying also that they have been in touch with the University System of Georgia.
“We are working closely with the University System of Georgia and federal authorities as we seek a fuller understanding of the ramifications of the executive order and its implementation,” the statement read.
Becker said the student body is comprised of individuals from over 160 nations, and that “an ambitious global agenda is one of the five major goals in our strategic plan”.
“I want to assure each of you that we place great value on the many international students and scholars who make Georgia State a vibrant and thriving university,” he said. “We are proud of the important contributions that international scholars and students have made to Georgia State, and we look forward to their continued contributions.”
In another statement, the University System of Georgia (USG) Chancellor Steve Wrigley said they are continuing to coordinate with international education officers, and directed university presidents to reach out to USG as the primary point of contact for all campus communities.
“As you know, the safety and well-being of our campus communities is our university system’s top priority, and it is important that we remain in close communication as new information and direction from the State Department becomes available in the coming days,” he said.
So far, the U.S. State Department’s website does not have any updates, but only an ‘Urgent Notice’ banner that reads:
“Under the Executive Order on Protection the Nation from Terrorist Attacks by Foreign Nationals signed on January 27, 2017, visa issuance to nationals of the countries of Iraq, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen has been suspended effective immediately until further notification. We will announce any other changes affecting travelers to the United States as soon as information is available.”