Wheaton College offers refugee scholarship

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Refugees stand outside their tent at the Ifo Extension refugee camp in Dadaab, near the Kenya-Somalia border in Garissa County, Kenya October 19, 2011. REUTERS/Thomas Mukoya/File Photo

In what appears to be a first, Wheaton College in Norton, Massachusetts has announced a new scholarship for an international student affected by President Donald Trump’s immigration order temporarily banning entry into this country for citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries and refugees from around the world.

The Wheaton Refugee Scholarship being offered by the liberal arts school with some 1,600 students, was just announced by college President Dennis M. Hanno, and will cover all costs of attending the college. For the 2016-17 school year, tuition, room and board, and a student activity fee amounted to $61,512, with $48,694 of that covering tuition.

Hanno said, according to the school’s website, that Wheaton is “dedicated to improving the world by advancing knowledge and sharing it,” but that Trump’s order “endangers our ability to deliver on that mission.”

The executive order includes a ban on entry into the United States by citizens of Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen for the next 90 days and temporary bans refugees as well, including an indefinite block on those from Syria.

About 1 in 20 of the more than 20 million students enrolled in U.S. colleges in 2015-2016 came from other countries, the Institute of International Education said. Some 17,000 of them were originally from the seven countries in Trump’s ban.

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