GOLDEN, Colo. (CBS4) – As the tense situation between the United States and Iranian governments continues, international students are left in limbo as their future after school remains uncertain.
“I was so fortunate to be accepted. Everything just kind of matched perfectly. I had a 1% chance to get a Visa because it’s so hard. It was like a miracle to get a visa,” said Sepideh Kianbakht, a Research Assistant at Colorado School of Mines and the president of the Iranian Student Association.
Kianbakht first visited Colorado during a mountaineering conference. She quickly worked to continue her education in Colorado. She’s studied for both a master’s degree and a Ph.D.
“I fell in love with Colorado. I was hoping to do a lot of climbing and mountaineering and doing my Ph.D. here,” she said.
But political changes have made it more difficult for her to return home in Tehran. Her father is now battling cancer. Her last trip home was more than three years ago.
“I’m so afraid of something happening. Because you don’t know exactly when you’re going to get (a visa). It’s so much worse. You can’t plan,” Kianbakht said.
Visa uncertainty is a problem for many Iranian students who wait weeks without notice of if they’re going to get a visa or not. So, many students try and bring their culture to campus so they can share with American students.
“Because we cannot go home, I want this organization to be a support source so we can get together,” Kianbakht said. “It’s awesome, feeling the support.”