Virginia Tech students from Iran share concerns about conflict in their home country

Students: President Trump’s speech a hopeful sign for de-escalation between America and Iran

BLACKSBURG, Va. – The unrest in Iran may have caught some Americans’ attention, but it takes on a different meaning for Iranians living and studying in America.

That includes a group of Iranian students pursuing degrees at Virginia Tech.

“My family can’t come and visit me, and I can’t go and visit them," said Sara Yazdi, who traveled from Iran to Virginia Tech for her postgraduate education this year. “I was not able to sleep recently because I was worried for them and they were worried for me.”

Several of the students remain worried about if they can travel back to Iran, or if they may be deported if the situation escalates.

“Am I going to leave this country? What am I going to do then?" said Virginia Tech postgraduate student and Iranian native Shakiba Davari. "Is my bank account going to block me? What am I going to do then?”

“You realize, ‘Do I really want to go back to my country?’" said fellow Virginia Tech postgraduate student Yousef Jalali. "If I go back, even in the middle of my study, can I come back again?’”

The students say their anxiety hit its highest point Tuesday night when Iranian troops fired missiles at an Iraqi military base. However, they say President Donald Trump’s speech Wednesday morning has given them reason to believe the situation will deescalate soon.

“Iranian people just want peace," Yazdi said. "That’s why I always carry a peace sign necklace with me.”