American universities are generally very safe places: embassy officials

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Delhi: Officials at the US Embassy in New Delhi have responded to concerns over escalating gun violence in America by saying the facilities are completely safe for students.

On Tuesday, Donald Heflin, minister counselor for consular affairs at the US Embassy in India, said many parents have questioned the safety of US universities.

“American universities are generally very safe places. They usually have their own police force and exercise strict controls on people who enter residential or educational buildings. Unfortunately, most of these events have occurred in primary and secondary schools and it’s just tragic,” Donald Heflin said. affirmed.

Echoing similar sentiments, cultural and educational affairs adviser Anthony Miranda said universities share the same concerns.

“They want to make sure that students who choose to attend this university are safe so they can focus on their studies and extracurricular activities,” Miranda said.

Miranda, speaking on university safeguards for student safety, noted that colleges have developed a number of procedures and programs to ensure the safety of their campuses, including ensuring people have visible identification. at any time. He went on to say more about blue light phone booths.

“These are phone booths that can be scattered around a university that connects directly to the police.”

“There are also student-run organizations that make sure there is always someone who can walk you home to help with security as well,” Miranda said.

The United States recently witnessed a horrific mass shooting that occurred at an elementary school in Texas on May 24.

Speaking about issuing visas for Indian students, Heflin said, “All in all, we will have opened over 100,000 appointments this year. The demand is really strong. I really hope that every student who wants an appointment can make one.”

“We basically missed the whole year of 2020 due to shutdowns here in India. And then we got back on our feet at Christmas that year and had a big student visa season last year. This year is going to be the largest of all time. We have a lot of requests. We are therefore trying to respond to them by opening up a lot of interview slots”, explained the Minister Counselor for Consular Affairs.

US Chargé d’Affaires Patricia Lacina, US Embassy India also said, “Indians are the second largest group of international students in the US. We have opened tens of thousands of appointments for visas and expanded our interview waiver options for students under new visa guidelines.”

The sixth annual Student Visa Day was hosted by the US Mission to India. Over 2,500 Indian student visa applications were screened by consular officers from the US Embassy in New Delhi and Consulates General in Chennai, Hyderabad, Kolkata and Mumbai.

Student Visa Day honors the relationship between the United States and India in higher education. Over 200,000 Indian students are enrolled in US academic institutions this year, representing over 20% of all foreign students in the United States.


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