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Universities in Arizona and across U.S. urge more support for refugee students

Ahead of World Refugee Day next week, leaders from universities and colleges around the country are laying out ways the government should help refugees. 

Presidents from dozens of institutions around the country, including Northern Arizona University and Arizona State University, signed onto a statement that says the war in Ukraine and the resulting humanitarian disaster has laid bare the need to support refugees and displaced students. But they say the conflict in that country is one of a handful of conflicts and other turmoil around the world.

As those issues continue, the leaders say the Biden administration should do more to make visas available to international students and academics seeking refuge from conflict. They also said the U.S. should expand access to scholarship opportunities for refugees and that their institutions stand ready to help. 

Last month, the United Nations said a record 100 million people have been forcibly displaced from their homes around the world. 

Alisa Reznick is a senior field correspondent covering stories across southern Arizona and the borderlands for the Tucson bureau of KJZZ's Fronteras Desk.