International Programs

International Student Handbook

Group of students

International Programs Office (IPO)
International Student Servcies (ISS)
Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services (BCIS)

Employment
Host Families
Food Service

Health Services

Housing

International Correspondence

Meeting Other International Students

Money Matters

Travel Resources

Glossary of Terms

download the International Student Handbook

 

International Programs Office (IPO)

The Director of International Programs is the liaison with the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services (BCIS), formerly know as Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS). He can help you with most of your interactions with that office.

It is located at Eliot 203, and the person in charge there is Paul DeYoung, x7290.

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Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services (BCIS)

The Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services is part of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), which in turn is one of the departments of the federal government of the United States. There are four Homeland Security offices, one in Vermont for East-Coast states, one in Nebraska for Western and Midwestern states, one in Texas for Southern states and one in California for Southwestern states. There are also regional offices including one in Portland. Most of Reed's international students are in the United States on a student visa (J-1 or F-1). If you have another visa, you should contact the Director of International Programs for questions on BCIS issues.

The information provided here is geared towards students with a J-1 or F-1 visa.

Immigration Problems

Sometimes students have immigration problems, often because they have not †adequately maintained their immigration status. Sometimes problems can be resolved very easily, but the matter can go on for months with a large number of correspondence between the student and BCIS. If you have an immigration problem of any kind, you should talk first with the Director of International Programs. He will be able to assist you in resolving the difficulty.

It is essential that you have a complete record of all your dealings with the BCIS--copies of your letters to them, their letters to you, documents that you submit, etc. Be sure to make copies of everything: if they lose your papers or question any of your actions, you will have a complete record. When you talk to the Director, you can ask him to make photocopies of everything so that your file in the International Programs Office also will reflect a complete record, in case the Bureau of Immigration calls the Director to discuss your case.

Sometimes students have problems complicated enough to require a lawyer. Please consult the Director before considering a lawyer. It could cost you a great deal of money to handle even a simple matter that could have been solved by the Director. Most immigration lawyers are honest and trustworthy, but there are some who will charge you unreasonable amounts of money for routine immigration matters. Be sure to consult the Director for referral should you decide to seek legal help.

Maintaining Student Status

When you arrived in the United States, you received a small three-part white card known as the Arrival-Departure Record or I-94 form. The immigration inspector at the port of entry stamps the form to indicate the type of visa you have, the length of time you are authorized to stay in the country (most often "Duration of Status"), and the school which you are authorized to attend. This is a basic document which you have to present at various times during your stay and which you will have to surrender to an immigration inspector when you leave the United States (except for brief periods of travel in Canada--see later section on travel). All people coming to this country (except permanent residents and citizens) receive an I-94 when they arrive, no matter what visa they have.

As a student, you are required to maintain your immigration status at all times. This requirement has various elements:

  • You must register for a full load of courses every semester at the school you were authorized to attend. At Reed, this means 3.0 to 4.5 units. You must maintain full-time status throughout the semester. If you register for 3.0 or more units at the beginning of the semester and later drop to one or two courses, leaving you with fewer than 3.0 units, you will need to take more than 3.0 units in the following semester in order to maintain status. If you are on a J-1 visa, you are required to pursue full- time the program or activity which is specified in your DS2019.
  • All SEVIS-approved U.S. colleges and universities are required to report each semester (to the BCIS) students who did not register for a full load (see below) or who failed to enroll. Therefore, if you remain in the United States but fail to register, you will be considered ìout of statusî and reported to BCIS. Documented illness is usually the only acceptable reason for not registering as a full-time student. If for some reason you cannot register or need to take an underload, you should go as soon as possible to the International Programs Office to discuss your situation with the Director.
  • You will not seek employment off-campus without the written authorization of BCIS as documented in the Employment Authorization Document (EAD). See the section of this pamphlet titled "Employment" for further information.
  • You will remain at the school you are authorized to attend. If you want to change schools in the middle of your program or after receiving a degree, you must notify BCIS as well as your current school. The Director can help you with this transfer process.

When your authorized stay in the United States (as shown on the DS2019 or I-20) is about to expire, you must either apply to BCIS for an extension of your stay to complete your program, apply for a new non-immigrant status, or leave the United States. If you are going to remain in the United States you must file the appropriate petition/application before the expiration of your current program.

If you do not follow these rules, BCIS will consider you "out of status": that is, in violation of your immigration status you run the risk of being expelled.

Passport

Your passport must be valid at all times and not due to expire for at least six months beyond the period of your authorized stay. BCIS will not take action on any application that you submit unless your passport is valid. Whenever your passport is about to expire, you should send it to your country's embassy to have it renewed.

Optional Practical Training (OPT)

Reed students in the F-1 program may apply for a period of practical training (paid work off-campus) both during and after completion of studies. For both periods of practical training the student must have been in F-1 status for at least one full academic year. The training must be in the student's field of study. An F-1 student may be authorized to engage in practical training for a combined period of 12 months during the duration of student status in that non-immigration classification. The two periods are:

  • Prior to completion of studies: OPT is available to full-time students. Students are eligible for up to 12 months (including that time used after completion of studies) of practical training to be used during the annual vacation periods as long as it adheres to the guidelines above. Full or part-time work must be in the studentís course of study. Students work with the Director of International Programs to apply for OPT. This often includes a letter from the prospective employer or a letter from their advisor (to the Director of International Programs) stating that it is his or her belief that the training compliments the students study at Reed. An on-line form will be submitted and the SEVIS record will be updated in order to attain the Employment Authorization Document (EAD). Students must not begin training before reception of the EAD.
  • After completion of studies: OPT may not exceed 12 months of full-time training in combination with OPT used prior to completion of studies. To apply, students must submit the online forms to update the SEVIS record with the help of the Director and a certification letter from the advisor prior to the studentís program completion date.

Transfer to another School

Students may transfer to a different school to pursue a new degree or continue in the same degree level through the following notification procedure:

  • Obtain admission and notify the DSO at the new school.
  • Inform the DSO at Reed of intention to transfer. The DSO will be able to process the transfer through SEVIS.
  • The new school will then issue a new I-20.

Travel to Canada

The U.S. and Canada have a very long, common border and students often use vacation periods to visit our neighbor to the North. You may need a visa for travel to Canada, and you should check with the IPO before you take a trip there. Visas can take 2 weeks or more to be issued. You will also need a signed I-20, your passport, and a valid F-1 visa for re-entry into the United States. For brief visits to Canada it should not be necessary to surrender the I-94 departure card. Let the officer at the border or airline official know that your visit is brief and that you will be returning to school in the United States.

Travel outside the U.S.A.

In order to leave the country temporarily and return, you will need an entry permit (visa) to the other country and a United States entry permit. Students should check with the Embassy of the country they would like to visit in order to inquire about specific entry procedures. Please see the Director of International Programs for help with this process and make sure you have completed all the forms needed.

Visa to Come to the U.S.A.

Whenever you are outside the U.S, and want to come here to study, you must have in your possession a valid passport, a valid student or exchange visitor visa, and immigration Form I-20 or DS-2019. When you first came to this country you probably had these documents; each time you leave the country, even for a short visit abroad, and intend to return, you must have the same documents in order to return.

The United States Embassy in your own country originally stamped a visa in your passport, valid for a certain period of time (most often D/S, meaning duration of status meaning as long as you remain in-status as a student you can enter and leave as you wish) and for a certain number of entries into the U.S. As long as you remain in the U.S. you do not need to be concerned with visa expiration. If you leave the U.S. with a visa that is no longer valid, you must return to an U.S. Embassy and obtain a new visa before you return. You cannot obtain a new visa within the U.S., only at an U.S. Embassy or Consulate outside the country. Then, upon arrival in the U.S., you will present a valid passport, a valid visa, and a valid I-20 form (F students) or DS-2019 (J students).

Additionally, upon arrival you should also carry with you evidence of your financial support so that you can show immigration officials how you finance your education here. If you are going abroad for a short visit only, they may not ask to see that financial evidence, but they have a right to ask for it each time you want to return to the United States, so you should always have it with you. See SEVIS section below!

Where is BCIS?

Portland, Oregon District Office:
511 N.W. Broadway
Portland, Oregon 97209
Telephone: (503) 326-2807

SEVIS

SEVIS is an internet-based system that allows schools and the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services (BSCI) to exchange data on the visa status of international students. Accurate and current information is transmitted electronically throughout an F-1 or J-1 student's academic career in the United States. U.S. embassies and consulates also have access to SEVIS.

How Does SEVIS Work?

After Reed College admits an international, SEVIS is notified and BCIS decides whether to approve the College's request to issue an I-20. If approved by BCIS, the College transmits the new bar-coded I-20 form to the student.

The student visits the U.S. consulate abroad, and the consulate confirms through SEVIS that the I-20 the student is carrying is a valid document. If everything is in order, the consulate issues the visa. The Bureau of Customs and Border Protection (BCBP, a division of the Department of Homeland Security) officer at the airport (or other port of entry) reports the student's entry into the U.S. to SEVIS. When the student arrives on campus, he/she reports to the International Programs Office (IPO). After the student registers for classes, Reed confirms, through SEVIS, the student's enrollment. The College continues to provide regular electronic reports verifying enrollment to BCIS throughout the student's academic career. Finally, SEVIS records the student's departure from the United States.

What Data Does SEVIS Collect?

REED must report:

  • whether the student has enrolled at the school, or failed to enroll;
  • a change of the student or dependent's legal name or address;
  • any student who graduates prior to the end date listed on the I-20;
  • academic or disciplinary actions taken due to criminal conviction;
  • when the student drops below a full course of study without prior authorization from the Designated School Official (DSO). (Immigration regulations refer to international student advisers as DSOs);
  • the termination date and reason: the date the student ceases to be enrolled at the college and the reason he or she is no longer enrolled;
  • other information generated by standard procedures such as program extensions, school transfers, changes in level of study, employment authorizations, reinstatement, and if a student fails to maintain status or complete his or her program.

How Does Reed Help Students Comply with the Immigration Laws?

The College is committed to assist students in ways that prevent status violations from ever occurring. Accordingly, effective Spring Semester 2003, three registration changes will take effect.

  • F-1 and J-1 students new to REED must check in with the International Programs Office (IPO) prior to registering for classes. The IPO will review the student's visa documents, confirm to SEVIS that the student has arrived on campus, and then release the hold on the student's registration.
  • F-1 and J-1 students (not scholars) who register for less than a full course of study without a waiver of the full-time requirement will have their registration cancelled by the 14th calendar day of the semester.
  • International students will not be able to drop below a full course of study after the 7th calendar day of the semester without prior authorization from the DSO. Any student at Reed who wishes to enroll in a part-time load must seek the approval of a dean in student services as well. Further, if a reduction in tuition based on part-time enrollment is desired, the student must petition the administration committee to seek approval. "Full-time" means at least 3.0 Reed units per semester.

Acceptable reasons for reduced credit load include:

  • students who experience academic difficulties;
  • students in their final term of study who enroll only the credits required to complete the degree;
  • students who have a medical problem.

Remember, for students on F-1 or J-1 visas, only the Designated School Official in the IPO is able to authorize a reduced credit load for BCIS purposes. Students must also follow regular college procedures to receive academic approval of an underload.

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Employment

It is expected that people who come to the United States to study will have arranged sufficient financial resources so that they will not have to work. However, because of economic problems in their countries, unforeseen changes in circumstance, desire to have practical application of skills learned in the classroom, and so on, some students may want to consider working. Immigration regulations are strict with regard to employment, and if you need or want to work, you should make sure you are complying with the regulations.

Eligibility

On an F-1 student visa, you can work on the Reed campus without obtaining authorization from BCIS. The job must not interfere with your academic work and therefore cannot exceed 20 hours per week while school is in session.

If you are on a J-1 visa, you can work if you first obtain written permission from your program sponsor. BCIS does not have to grant permission, but your sponsor must agree that the work is necessary and will not interfere with your program. If your sponsor is Reed, you should discuss this with the Director of International Programs.

Other students may work as part of the optional practical training program (OPT).

How to Find a Job

Students and departments are directed to post on-campus job opportunities to the Student Employment website: http://web.reed.edu/student_employment/. Students are encouraged to start their job search as early as possible. Each department does their own hiring and students must inquire directly with the departments that most interest them. The following departments hire a large number of students each semester: mailroom, food services, library, physical plant, sports center, biology stockroom and bookstore.

Off-Campus: To find a job off-campus you should also see the Career Services Center. This office is designed to help students plan their careers and find jobs. They have listings of job openings and can make suggestions to you in finding a job. Some of the jobs are internships and summer jobs which would be available to you for practical training.

Income Taxes

Everyone who works in the United States is subject to taxes on income, payable to the federal government and to the state government of one's residence. Students on F and J visas are also subject to income taxes. Your liability can be affected by the conditions under which you work, whether there is a tax treaty between your country and the U.S., and the total amount of money you make during the year. All students on non-immigrant visas, whether they have earned money or not will be required to submit a declaration and an income tax form each year to the Internal Revenue Service. Students should meet with Janie Hinkle-Clayton in the Business Office to discuss tax matters as well as issues related to working on campus.

Optional Practical Training (OPT)

As mentioned in the section on Immigration, you can obtain permission to seek practical training during or after you have received your degree. The training that you seek must be directly related to your field of study and must not be available in your own country. You can apply through the Director of International Programs. You do not need a job before you can apply, and you should not start to work until the Director has authorized the training and you have received permission to begin the training. You can obtain permission for a total of 12 months of practical training, which can be taken in 3 month blocks prior to completion of studies or 6 month blocks after completion. The new "EAD" program provides that students submit an application for practical training to the school official for approval prior to submission to the BCIS for determination and issuance of the EAD. Be sure to be in contact with the Director of International Programs in this process.

J Exchange Visitors at Reed College are not allowed to participate in pre- or post-completion ìacademic trainingî which is intended to be vocational in nature and is thus not compatible with a liberal arts and sciences degree.

Social Security: Taxes and Cards

The Social Security Administration is a retirement program administered by the federal government. When a person earns wages, a certain amount is deducted from each paycheck and deposited into the Social Security system. The employer also contributes a certain amount to the system. When the person retires at age 65, he/she can begin to draw on a monthly pension.

Generally, the wages of people in this country on F or J visas are excluded from coverage under the social security program, and no deductions should be made from paychecks. If you are on an F-1 visa and work part-time on-campus, or work part-time off-campus with authorization from BCIS, you are not subject to social security taxes. All international students who work on campus must receive a Social Security card. Students planning to work on campus should meet with Janie Hinkle-Clayton in the Business Office as soon as possible before beginning work. All international students are required to file income tax returns, even if they do not work, and a Social Security Card is necessary for this process. If you plan to work on- or off-campus you will need to obtain a Social Security Card. If you are working at a job that is authorized practical training, you are also exempt from these deductions. If you are on a J-1 visa, social security tax will not be withheld if you have permission to work and obtain a letter of authorization from your program sponsor. You should discuss these matters with your employer before you begin to work. If the employer has a question, refer him or her to the Internal Revenue Service, to IRS Publication 518 (Foreign Scholars and Educational and Cultural Exchange Visitors), or to the Director of International Student Programs. If Social Security taxes have been deducted from your paycheck (under the heading FICA), you can apply for a refund by talking directly to your employer or by submitting Form 843 to the Internal Revenue Service.

Identification in the US: Driverís License and Social Security card

You need to have a Social Security card whenever you work, even if you are not subject to the system's taxes. Moreover, the card is frequently used in this country as an identification card. To obtain a driver's license, to apply for a job, and in other instances, you may be asked to present a card. When you apply for a Social Security number at a Social Security office, you must complete Form SS-5, the Application for a Social Security Card, available from Janie Hinkle-Clayton in Eliot 307. You must also provide the necessary documents, which include a letter from your employer, a letter from the DSO Paul DeYoung, and a letter from Janie Hinkle-Clayton. Please contact Janie in the Business Office for more information. It takes two to four weeks to process the application.

The office closest to Reed is in downtown Portland:

1538 S.W. Yamhill
Portland, OR 97205
Telephone (800) 772-1213.

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Host Families

Reed College sponsors a Host Family Program to provide a mutually rewarding relationship between American families and international students. The student's first priority is to his or her studies, and both the adjustment to a new academic system and a different language can be demanding. Many students, however, desire to learn as much as possible through personal experience of the politics, economics, geography, culture, and people of a different country. The hospitality of Americans can provide a multidimensional view of American life, can temper loneliness for the newcomer, and can help overcome the isolation of the campus. It is demonstrable that experiences outside the classroom and beyond the residence hall can be an illuminating and valuable part of the student's stay in the U.S.

Host families are matched with incoming international students prior to their arrival to begin the freshman year. Families often correspond with their student and arrange to meet at the Portland airport when the student arrives. A reception is given by the International Programs Office in the fall to allow families and students to become better acquainted as well as to meet other students and families participating in the program. Throughout the year, families invite students to their homes to share a meal, to experience a traditional American holiday, or to join them in recreational or cultural activities around the state. Students, in turn, have the opportunity to host their families on campus to participate in a number of international events and programs. Host families are issued complimentary Sports Center passes, which enable them to join their student in various athletic activities.

No requirements are made for students or families, and the level of interaction is dictated by participants, accommodating their own schedules. The Director of International Programs coordinates the Host Family Program and should be contacted for additional information.

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Food Service

The Food Service at Reed College is dedicated to providing wholesome, well- balanced and varied meals in pleasant surroundings. Meal plans are designed to provide maximum flexibility for busy student schedules. Meeting the individual dietary needs of international students is a priority for the Food Service Director.

In addition to the general entrÈes offered at each meal, five different salad selections are available with numerous toppings and a variety of dressings. Meals also include five dessert items (including fresh fruit and ice cream for every meal), daily homemade soups, two vegetables at each meal, and a wide variety of beverages including assorted teas. The vegetarian program provides quality, tasty, nutritious meals using whole grain ingredients and complimentary proteins. Each meal provides one vegetarian option, as well as vegetarian soup, fresh fruit, and a salad bar.

If the regular program requires modification, students are encouraged to meet personally with the Food Services Director to discuss their needs. The Food Service cooperates with international student groups to prepare meals for international evenings held in the international theme houses on campus. These evenings, often open to the entire college community, feature food from a particular country, along with presentations about the culture, geography and political environment of that country. The International Programs Director coordinates these programs and should be contacted for details.

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Health Services

Medical care in the United States is very expensive and there is no national health care system. Most U.S citizens purchase medical insurance which pays the majority of the costs of any illness or injury. When you register at Reed as a full- time student, you are required to show proof of medical insurance or to purchase insurance through the College. Insurance through Reed will provide a solid comprehensive coverage. Health care is thus provided in two parts:

  • the College provides a range of services in the college infirmary and
  • your insurance covers services not available at Reed.

The Student Health Service is organized to provide routine medical and counseling care to registered full-time Reed students. Prescribed medications are dispensed at a discount price and referrals to specialists in the Portland area can be arranged expeditiously as the need arises.

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Housing

On-Campus Housing

The college provides housing for approximately two-thirds of the student body. All incoming freshmen are assured rooms and expected to live in the residence halls. Living on-campus offers a number of advantages, including close proximity to classes and the library, as well as the opportunity to get to know other students in a supportive unstructured environment. Upper-class students serve as house advisors, helping freshmen become acclimated to Reed and encouraging activities and social events. International students have found living on-campus an excellent way to learn about lifestyles and customs of American students. Their presence enriches the living-learning environment for all the students in the residential program.

In addition to the regular residence halls on campus, five theme "international language houses" are available. The Spanish, Russian, German, Chinese, and French houses are centers for language and cultural activities from the respective countries or language/culture regions and each is staffed with a native speaker/Language Scholar. International students are welcome to participate in these houses.

Off-Campus Housing

There are a number of large houses and apartments surrounding the campus which traditionally have housed Reed students at reasonable rates. The Office of Residence Life will assist students seeking these accommodations.

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International Correspondence

Reed College operates a FAX and can place international correspondence directly. You will find this the easiest and fastest way to conduct international correspondence in instances where you cannot use the telephone.

Reed's FAX number is (503) 777-7769.

You should contact the Print Shop in the basement level of Eliot Hall for information. Should you need to send a telegraph, you can call Western Union in Portland at (503) 248-6710 or (503) 248-3670.

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Meeting Other International Students

At Reed

In addition to the general orientation program for all new students and the specific orientation program given for new international students, Reed hosts a reception for international students is given during Orientation Week. At the reception, students will meet the President, Vice President, and other key officers of the college who will greet them and answer questions about Reed. In addition, new and returning internationals will have an opportunity to meet each other, share respective wisdom, and exchange local addresses and telephone numbers.

Off-Campus

There are a large number of international students in the Portland metropolitan area. The DSOs at Portland State University, the University of Portland, and Lewis and Clark College share information on a regular basis and would be pleased to assist international students from Reed. You should contact Reed's Director of International Programs for details.

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Money Matters

It is advisable for international students to open an account at a commercial bank. This will afford easy access to your money, allow you to pay bills by check, and avoid the necessity of carrying large amounts of cash. There are some small differences among the various banks in the area of the college; however, it really doesn't matter which one you choose. In order to open an account, you will need identification, preferably a passport. The local banks are particularly helpful to Reed students and will help with international transactions and other details of concern to international students. You should take your Reed student I.D. card when you open your account and transact business. There is also a 'bank fair' each fall on campus during which the local branches are represented and set up accounts for students.

Most international students receive funds periodically from their own countries. This is a time-consuming and sometimes complicated process. Someone at home goes to a bank and pays whatever sum of money is to be sent to you. The bank then sends the money, sometimes after obtaining government approval to an international bank in the U.S. (San Francisco or New York), which then forwards it to you. The person sending the money should give careful instructions as to where the money should be sent. The easiest and fastest way would be to have the money sent to your bank. The recommended way to achieve a money transfer is via a wire transfer, which needs to be initiated by a person abroad. For this process, you will need to obtain a Routing number. Inquire with the bank of your choice for details.

You will be able to write checks on campus to pay for college bills or to get spending cash. The Business Office in Eliot 308 is open from 10 am to noon and 2 to 4 pm during the week. You will need your Reed ID to write checks. There is also an ATM machine on campus.

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Travel Resources

International Travel

When planning travel overseas, students are encouraged to contact the International Programs Office at least three weeks prior to departure to gain information regarding low-cost student fares, to purchase international student I.D. cards, and to arrange visa details.

Vacation Travel

Many international students use the long break between semesters as an opportunity to travel within the United States. That is a particularly good time to travel, as the dormitories are closed (although internationals may be able to remain on campus) and activities around the college are minimal. Several resources may be useful in planning travel during that time. The YMCA International offers a visit program which provides housing with host families in cities of the student's choice for periods of two to three days. Students send their itinerary three weeks prior to beginning of their trip to the sponsors, who make contacts with families in the cities the student plans to visit and send back addresses and family information to the student. Also, the Council for International Education Exchange sponsors a See-America program which provides a budget rate for international students at hotels throughout the U.S. Details and applications are available in the International Programs Office.

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Glossary of Terms

BCIS

An abbreviation for the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services. Created by the Department of Homeland Security and previously known as Immigration and Naturalizations Service (INS), BCIS is responsible for most applications and petitions.

DHS

Department of Homeland Security. As of March 1, 2003, the Department of Homeland Security took charge of immigration functions and divides the former Immigration and Naturalization Service into three divisions headed by the DHS: the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services (BCIS), the Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (BICE), and the Bureau of Customs and Border Protection (BCBP).

DS-2019 (SEVIS DS-2019)

Certificate of Eligibility for Exchange Visitor (J-1) Status. Basic document which people use to obtain a J visa abroad, to extend their stay in the U.S., and to travel abroad for brief periods.

DSO

Designated School Official. A school official who ensures institutional and individual compliance with the law who helps foreign nationals in immigration processes.

Employment Authorization Document (EAD)

The document authorizing employment for an F-1 student issued by BCIS. A student cannot begin work before receiving this card; after receiving it, the student is then authorized to work for up to 12 months.

Extension of Stay

An F-1 student is admitted to the United States for "duration of status," that is, to complete the educational program noted on the I-20. Should a student require additional time to complete an educational program beyond the date originally estimated (as stated in item 5 on the initial Form I-20) the student must comply with BCIS procedures for program extension. Application must be made to the Designated School Official (DSO) in a 30-day period before the completion date on Form I-20.

I-20 (SEVIS I-20)

Certificate of Eligibility for Non-Immigrant (F-1) Student Status. Allows student to study full-time at an institution to which he or she has been admitted. Basic document which students use to obtain student visas abroad, leave and return to the U.S., transfer from one school to another, etc.

It also features the student-specific SEVIS information number. Notations by BCIS indicate extensions of stay, authorizations to work, and authorizations to transfer schools. This document must be kept up-to-date for the student to remain legally in the U.S.

I-94 Arrival-Departure Record

Small piece of paper which everyone receives when arriving in the U.S. It indicates visa type, date of entry into the country, transfer of schools, approval for work/practical training, and the date to which the person is authorized to stay.

Optional Practical Training

Work experience or temporary employment to gain practical experience in the studentís major area of study which the student can seek during (after completion of 9 months in the program) or after completion of a degree. The applications, which must be made before completion of studies, must be made through the Director of International Student Programs.

Paul DeYoung

Paul is the Designated School Official (DSO), Responsivle Officer (RO), and Director of International Programs. He is the official representative for all international students at Reed and a very valuable resource, so get to know him and be nice.

Responsible Officer (RO)

Individuals appointed by an exchange visitor program sponsor to represent the J-1 exchange student.

SEVIS

Student and Exchange Visitor Information System. Tracks and records a studentís stay in the United States. SEVIS is accessible through the DSO and is used to create a student record and to change and update a studentís status.

Visa

Red, white, and blue sticker addendum affixed to a page in a person's passport by a U.S. Consular Officer abroad. It allows a person to apply to enter the U.S. Final determination regarding entry is made at the point of entry (the place at which the student arrives in the United States). Once the person has been allowed into the country, the visa's validity is no longer of concern. A visa must be valid only if the person is outside the U.S. and wants to enter the country.

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