International Services for Students and Scholars (ISSS)

ISSS is currently waiting for guidance from the Student Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP, the agency that administers SEVIS, the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System) to answer some of the questions below.

Q: As a current student who left the United States, what if I cannot get my visa in time to re-enter the United States for the fall semester?
A: Contact your academic department to discuss options for classes during the upcoming semester. Once you have determined your course of study, please email ISSS at isssoffice@rpi.edu, or schedule a virtual advising appointment to discuss how your decision works with your immigration status.

 

Q: If I am outside the country for more than five months, will I be able to re-enter?
A: SEVP confirmed that if an F-1 student remained enrolled full-time and completed their coursework online during the spring and summer semesters, they would maintain their F-1 status even if they were studying outside of the United States. ISSS is awaiting further guidance from SEVP to answer this question for fall.

 

Q: Do I need to quarantine for 14 days after I enter the United States? If yes, where can I stay?
A: According to guidance from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), all incoming international travelers should plan to self-quarantine for 14 days upon arrival in the United States. ISSS is working with Student Living and Learning to determine how we can best support international students entering the United States.

Q: If my class cohort is allowed back on campus, is there a limit to the number of online classes I can take?
A: ISSS is awaiting guidance from SEVP.

 

Q: I am currently outside of the United States. Do I need to remain outside of the United States if I am not taking in-person classes?
A: ISSS is awaiting guidance from SEVP.

 

Q:  I am already in the United States. Do I need to leave if I am not taking in-person classes?
A: ISSS is awaiting guidance from SEVP.

 

Q: As an incoming first-year international student, what if I am unable to get my visa in time?
A: Contact Admissions at (518) 276-6216 to determine the best course of action.

 

Q: As a sophomore international student, do I need to leave the United States during the fall semester?
A: ISSS is awaiting guidance from SEVP.

 

Q: As a sophomore international student, will my Arch experience be changed because of online classes during the fall semester?
A: No. Sophomores will return to campus in the spring, and then will complete The Arch summer term on campus, allowing them to participate in their future Arch semester-away experience.

 

Q: As a junior international student, will my immigration status affect my Arch semester away?
A: All juniors participating in The Arch, who are enrolled for 12 credits during the summer semester, have been registered in SEVIS as a full-time student during the 2020 summer term. Therefore, during the 2020 fall semester, you can take coursework online or in person while maintaining your visa status. You will also maintain your visa status during your spring 2021 semester away.

 

Q: As an incoming International graduate student, what if I am unable to get my visa in time?
A: Contact Graduate Admissions at (518) 276-6216 and your department to determine the best course of action.

 

Q: As an international graduate student, can I still use my TA/RA if I am in my home country?
A:
Contact your department for details. The availability of TA/RA for students abroad depends on your program and the nature of your award. Working from your home country will not have an effect on your visa status, though it does have different tax implications. Contact Human Resources to guide you through this process.

 

Q: Will online classes affect my ability to apply for OPT or CPT?
A: CPT and OPT regulations state that you must be in F-1 status for one full academic year in order to apply for these benefits. ISSS is waiting for guidance on how online classes may affect your ability to apply.

 

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