Statement regarding the Executive Order on Immigration

Elon University President Leo M. Lambert has released a statement regarding the impact of the Executive Order by the President of the United States regarding immigration policies.

January 29, 2017

Dear members of the Elon community,

The Executive Order on immigration issued by the President of the United States on Friday has spurred deep concern for many members of the Elon community. As a leader in international education and as a compassionate campus community dedicated to welcoming peoples of all faiths and cultures from more than 50 nations, we are monitoring this unfolding situation very carefully.

Elon’s Global Education Center staff members are working individually with international students and scholars to offer counsel, guidance and support; in order to safeguard privacy, we will make no statements about individuals who might potentially be affected by the Executive Order. However, we are relieved to report that no members of the Elon community have been stranded outside the United States because of this Executive Order. 

Elon University complies with all federal requirements related to administering its international programs for visiting students and scholars. The University also maintains a strong commitment to student privacy and does not release any confidential data about its students, faculty, and staff, including immigration status, unless required by law. Elon University does not discriminate on the basis of age, race, color, creed, sex, national or ethnic origin, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, or veteran’s status in the recruitment and admission of students, the recruitment and employment of faculty and staff, or the operation of any of its programs. 

Elon University is working closely with the broader higher education community this spring on other immigration-related concerns. I am among more than 600 college and university presidents who have signed a statement supporting the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, which makes higher education possible for undocumented immigrant students. In addition, this Tuesday I will join a delegation of North Carolina university leaders in Washington, D.C., to meet with the state’s senators and congressional representatives and to voice our views about U.S. immigration policies and specifically how they impact higher education.

As you encounter international students and scholars on campus this week, I hope you will offer words of encouragement, support, and respect. My four grandparents emigrated to this nation a century ago with little formal education and unable to speak a word of English. Our family is but one example of how this great nation has helped transform the lives of millions of immigrants. I ask that members of the Elon community hold high the light of generosity and compassion and drive out fear. Numen Lumen.  


Leo M. Lambert