By Nader Uskowi
The Iranian students in the US face difficulties of visiting their families for the fear of losing their visa and not being able to return to US to finish their studies. PAAIA, an Iranian-American advocacy group, has started an effort with the US immigration authorities to allow waivers for students facing family emergencies. We fully support these efforts. Below are the link to PAAIA’s post on the subject and an example of a young Iranian studying at Stanford who has face such predicament.
"In 2007, Leila, a student at Stanford University, lost a sister-in-law in a fight with cancer. At the time, her brother, his wife, and new-born child lived in Vancouver, Canada, a mere two hour flight from Leila’s California residence. However, due to the nature of visas granted to Iranian students,
Leila could not risk a trip abroad to visit her family. “To me, making the decision to go out of the United States is basically equivalent to answering this question: am I able to handle my studies and research from outside America if I go out and my clearance doesn’t come on time?” Unfortunately for Leila and many other Iranian students the answer is no."