Stevens Point Professor Stranded

By: Sabrina Wu
By: Sabrina Wu

Advanced biology students at UWSP will have to wait another year, or more, to take a class they were registered for this semester. That's because their professor is stranded in Guatemala.

Virginia Freire's husband says she was on her way home when U.S. government officials stopped her.

"She was on a Fulbright scholarship," said Karsten Crouse, Virginia's husband of three years. "They have a requirement that after you get your degree, you're supposed to return to your country for a two-year residency requirement."

Freire originally came to the U.S. on a student's visa, but her husband says she obtained a working permit after she graduated, so they thought she was no longer required to go back to Guatemala for two years.

"It was pretty devastating, you know," Crouse said. "I was going to pick her up at the airport, and when she didn't show up, I didn't know what had happened."

Her husband says the only way she can get back now, is by getting a waiver, which he's been told is very difficult to get. They have to prove her absence is posing an extreme hardship on the family.

For now the university has reassigned her classes to other professors. The chair of the department says they've cancelled the advanced biology class she was supposed to teach, because she was the only one qualified to teach it.


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