NEWS

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July 12, 2002

News in Brief

INS cracks down on part-time students from Canada and Mexico

Increased enforcement of immigration laws in the aftermath of the September terrorist attacks will prevent Canadian and Mexican part-time students from attending American colleges and universities.

Federal law dictates that a foreign student must be enrolled full-time in order to be eligible for a student visa, but in the past, the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) has loosely enforced the rules governing foreign students.

However, the role that domestic flight schools played in the plans of September 11 terrorists, who used the schools as training for hijacking and piloting aircraft as well as a shield for escaping government scrutiny, has resulted in the INS strictly enforcing a long-standing immigration statute governing foreign students.

Stringent enforcement of these laws is projected to have a severe financial impact on academic institutions along the nation's borders, particularly in Texas, New York and Michigan, costing the schools millions in lost tuition.

Congressmen Jim Kolbe, R, Arizona, and John LaFalce, D, New York, have introduced a bill aimed towards creating a new classification for part-time students from Canada and Mexico.

--Pete Beatty

Metra service suspended

The derailment of a Metra commuter rail train at 11th Street has caused northbound trains between University Park and Chicago to be shut down for the immediate future.

The train was headed to storage around 9 a.m. when two cars derailed, knocking down a structure supporting power lines vital to the function of the northbound line, according to Audrey Renteria, a spokeswoman for Metra. "There are well over 50 people on a crew working to clear the tracks right now," Renteria said.

Renteria said that it is unknown how long it will take to clear the train and make repairs. During this time there will be no inbound service on the line, although southbound trains will run. Metra will be running shuttle busses between McCormick and Randolph streets at rush hours, and the CTA will be accepting Metra passes for boarding on bus routes surrounding the affected line.

Because the train was headed for storage, no passengers were aboard, and no injuries have been reported.

--Whet Moser