JMU accepted into State Department refugee program

JMU News

HARRISONBURG, Va. — James Madison University has been chosen to welcome two refugee students from Africa as part of the university’s acceptance into a new program run by the U.S. Department of State. 

JMU will be matched with the students this spring, and they will arrive for the fall 2024 semester.  

The program, called Welcome Corps on Campus, is a first-of-its-kind program that aims to help refugee students access higher education and resettlement. 

JMU will be among the first institutions participating in Welcome Corps on Campus to admit qualified refugee students and support their resettlement as new Americans.  

“This program is an exciting opportunity for JMU to grow our global community and to be a national leader in global civic engagement, helping address the challenges displaced people face in achieving their potential,” said Christina Kilby, a professor of religion who is leading JMU’s involvement. “Welcome Corps is a beautiful expression of our mission and values as a university and builds on the strong relationship JMU has built with our community nonprofits serving immigrants and refugees.” 

To be accepted into the Welcome Corps program, JMU organized a group of faculty and staff from divisions across the university who will take responsibility for all the necessary steps in the refugee students’ resettlement process, from meeting them at the airport to assisting them with documentation to orienting them to campus life. The sponsors had to undergo background checks and extensive training to be able to host the students.  


Contact: Eric Gorton,, (540)908-1760

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Published: Thursday, February 1, 2024

Last Updated: Wednesday, March 13, 2024

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