Opposing undue burden on our international students

July 13, 2020

Dear College of Health Sciences community,

On July 6, federal guidelines were announced restricting international students from attending universities who will shift coursework fully online this fall.

I am deeply aware of the fear, confusion, and uncertainty this policy has caused within our international community. At the College of Health Sciences, we welcome students from all backgrounds and cultures, and recognize our community is one that is richer, stronger, and better because of their contributions and knowledge.

Health care is a service industry that demands compassion and respect for all people, and we will continue to educate our students to become practitioners who deliver care with empathy and cultural humility.

At this time, there are less than 10 international students enrolled in our programs.

  • Clinical Leadership and Management: 1
  • Medical Laboratory Science: 1
  • Physical Therapy: 1
  • Rehabilitation Sciences: 1

This is not a comprehensive list and we expect our numbers may grow when international students arrive on campus and complete orientation this fall. Since CHS courses will operate within a hybrid online and face-to-face model, we have determined international students within our college should not be impacted by these regulations.

I join with President Capilouto in expressing my concerns about this policy and agree it will further create the perception that we do not value diversity, inclusivity, and equity for all, as well as causing undue burden on communities who are already facing challenges.

Togetherness does not equal sameness. Our college—and UK—benefit from the diverse perspectives which make our campus whole. The university is currently reaching out to assist all international students and ensure their safety and well-being. Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have questions or concerns.

Thank you for making our community better.


Scott Lephart
Dean of the UK College of Health Sciences