Misuse and abuse of a student visa by terrorists has raised a lot of concern from the government of the United States. It necessitates strict laws that govern immigration into the country to eliminate the chances of criminal activities occurring and reoccurring. For instance, the terrorist bombing in Boston has caused concern over student immigration policy. The investigation on this incident revealed that one of the bombers came to the U.S. on a student visa, and two alleged accomplices are in the U.S. on student visas (Kegley, 2002). This is a critical issue that needs immediate solution to counter further implications of terrorism activities, especially those targeting the U.S. Due to this incident, Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky has brought up questions about the student visas program, “…do we need to take a hard look at student visas? Should we suspend student visas, or at least those from high-risk areas, pending an investigation into the national security implications of this program?” Addressing some or all these questions could eliminate further threat from international terrorists.
Solutions for the Misuse and Abuse of Student Visa
Fighting terrorism and misuse or abuse of a student visa needs an all-inclusive effort and corporation from all countries that relate to the United States in one way or another. The U.S. government has made great effort in fighting criminals who use the opportunities of migrating into the country as a loophole for articulating their illegal mission (Howard & Hoffman, 2011). For instance, border inspection, a thorough scrutiny and the knowledge of the origin of immigrants have helped the country minimize the problem. These strict laws and their thorough application have made terrorists go a notch higher in innovating new ways of entering the U.S. to commit their heinous acts (Howard & Hoffman, 2011). The new trends necessitate new and more appropriate measures to deal with the problem. The three possible solutions for this problem include enhanced background research, deportation of students who seem to be older than the average student’s age and enhanced connection between the government and University. Indeed, finding an amicable solution to the problem of acquisition of a student visa could limit the number of criminal activities that terrorists pose to the government of the U.S.
Enhanced Background Research.
The government could do more background research on a student who applies to come to America with a view to determining whether they deserve a study visa. Not just research on the paper proof or Internet, but do some actual and objective investigation (Howard & Hoffman, 2011). For example, the government should send the investigator to the student`s home or the place their parent work because the paper work could be fake, but you cannot fake your real life. Using actual research, the government can easily find out who`s have the potential possible to abuse the student visa to prevent it happen.
Deport the Student who are Older than the Average Student`s Age.
If there is a visa application showing that an applicant is older the average student age a lot, he/she should be denied a visa (Laqueur, 2000). Alternatively, the government should deport such students with irregular age even if they have immigrated to the country and do more research to discover the student’s identity. The reason is that there is more possible potential danger than the normal student because they not the right age, begging the question why do they still want to go aboard? That can be the depth of investigation to establish the truth and it could solve the problem.
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Enhanced Connection between the Government Department and University
In order to eliminate misuse and abuse of a student visa, the government should establish a special department to investigate who among the immigrants was not serious with his/her studies since they may be responsible for the misuse of their student visa (Howard & Hoffman, 2011). For example, the teacher should report the student who has got more than three fail grade in one quarter and then let the department do the research on the learner’s academic background. The strength connection with the government and school could depart the potentially dangerous students who will misuse or abuse their visa.
I would say that the solution number three is the best solution because of the following reasons. First, improved relationship between the University and immigration department will help net terrorists who purport to be students (Kegley, 2002). This means that immigration officials must frequent campuses to check on students who might abuse or misuse their visas. In this regards, the immigration officials should do that to know all immigrant students and monitor their class attendance, concentration, and most importantly, overall performance. Mostly, people who seek further studies fraudulently do not attend classes regularly because they spend most of their time doing other things that took them to that country. If such a student is linked to a terrorist organization, he/she will be busy planning for the execution of the illegal mission, which is their first priority.
Moreover, the teachers should get involved to monitor the students’ interactions during class discussions and report any abnormality to the immigration agent once a month. The reason is that if a student is in the class and his/her level of concentration is very low, it means that he/she cannot engage the tutor in discussion to understand the concept being taught. Sometimes, when a student is asked a question, the response could show that his/her mind was very far from class, thus necessitating a thorough investigation about the student.
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The student should be required to meet with the government agents on campus several times. This means that the investigation on the student’s movement within and outside the institution. In addition, such investigation should establish the activities that the student engages in after class and some of the companies he/she keep outside the school. These efforts are essential in determining the kind of a person each immigrant student is and could shed light on his/her intention (Laqueur, 2000). Furthermore, the tutors should monitor the academic performance of the immigrant student based on previous academic records that the University obtained during application and admission. A significant and consecutive decrease in performance could raise concern whether a student went abroad to study or he/she had missions to achieve other than academic.
In summary, fighting misuse and abuse of a student visa must be all-inclusive if it has to achieve remarkable success in curbing terrorists who purport to be international students. Since criminals look for safe way, thorough and stringent vetting process for immigrant students must be encouraged to reduce the implication of imposters. Some of the solutions to solve this problem include enhanced background research, deportation of students who seem to be older than the average student’s age and enhanced connection between the government department and University. The third solution is more appropriate because the tutors spend more time with learners and should know all immigrant students and monitor their class attendance, concentration and, most importantly, their overall performance.
- Laqueur, W. (2000). The new terrorism: Fanaticism and the arms of mass destruction. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
- Howard, R. & Hoffman, B. (2011). Terrorism and counterterrorism: Understanding the new security environment, readings and interpretations. New York, NY: Mcgraw-Hill.
- Kegley, C. Jr. (2002). The new global terrorism: Characteristics, causes, controls. New York, NY: Pearson.