Oct 24 2012
Student Work Visa Program Still Up in the Air
Wednesday, 24 October 2012

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           There were noticeably fewer foreign students working in Alaska salmon processing facilities this past season. That’s because of uncertainty that surrounded the student guest worker program known as the J-1 Visa. The state department had threatened to end the program abruptly during the months leading up to the salmon season, which did not give processors enough lead time to recruit and hire the students, who mostly came from Eastern Europe, particularly Turkey.
          Alaska Senator Mark Begich worked with the state department to delay action on ending the program, but he said its fate is still under review:
           He expects an update from the state department on the J-1 Visa this week, but in the meantime his staff is putting the finishing touches on his H2O program.