Over 500 College and University Presidents Applaud Special Student Relief for Ukraine and Sudan

Coalition also requests SSR for the more than 900 Cameroonian international students 

April 19, 2022
CONTACT: Jose Magaña-Salgado (

Washington, D.C.—The Presidents’ Alliance on Higher Education and Immigration applauds the decision by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to provide Special Student Relief (SSR) for international students from Ukraine and Sudan which will provide relief and flexibility to approximately 1,739 Ukrainian students and approximately 324 Sudanese students.  DHS also simultaneously announced instructions to apply for Temporary Protected Status for both countries today. The Presidents’ Alliance is delighted that President Biden and Secretary Mayorkas have worked together to provide needed humanitarian relief and flexibility for Ukrainian and Sudanese individuals. Pairing TPS and SSR provides additional flexibility for these individuals, allowing them to continue their education and participate in our economy by continuing to work and live in the United States. We urge the administration to continue to utilize TPS and SSR together to provide protection for individuals whose home countries are in crisis. After Cameroon’s recent TPS designation, we urge the administration to move quickly to announce SSR for Cameroon as soon as possible.

Jill Welch, Senior Policy Advisor to the Presidents’ Alliance, stated: “The decision to couple Special Student Relief (SSR) alongside Temporary Protected Status (TPS) is very encouraging and should be applied to all countries experiencing crises. SSR is particularly important to international students from these countries who may need to work more hours off-campus or drop below a full-time course load without the risk of violating their student status. We urge DHS to keep moving toward being more responsive to the needs of crisis-impacted populations determined to succeed and build a better future.”


The nonpartisan, nonprofit Presidents’ Alliance on Higher Education and Immigration brings college and university presidents and chancellors together on the immigration issues that impact higher education, our students, campuses, communities and nation. We work to advance just, forward-looking immigration policies and practices at the federal, state, and campus levels that are consistent with our heritage as a nation of immigrants and the academic values of equity and openness. The Alliance is composed of over 500 presidents and chancellors of public and private colleges and universities, enrolling over five million students in 43 states, D.C., and Puerto Rico.