UT Dallas will close for Winter Break. The ISSO will be closed from Friday, December 20 at 5pm and through Sunday, January 5, 2014 and will re-open on Monday, January 6, 2014 at 8.30am.
Students are advised to arrange for travel endorsements or other documents and advising requests in advance prior to Friday, December 20.
Mail addressed to the ISSO that arrives during the Winter Break will be held at UT Dallas Central Receiving. Central Receiving will be open only on Friday 12/27 from 10am to 2pm and Friday 01/03 from 10am to 2pm. If you are expecting important correspondence, you may contact Mail Services (972.883.2779) for an appointment to visit the Service Building and get your mail. If they are unable to answer when you call, you may leave a voice message and someone will call you back.
If you plan to travel outside the United States and return in F-1 or J-1 status over the Winter Break, you must have the following documents with you upon re-entry:
- Valid F-1/ J-1 visa.
- Valid passport with an expiration date that is at least six months beyond your re-entry date
- I-20/DS-2019 endorsed by an international student advisor within the last six months.
- Proof of financial support and a UTD transcript may also be requested.
- If you are on OPT you must also carry your EAD card and proof of employment.
For further information about the requirements for an F-1 visa visit the U.S. Department of State website at http://www.travel.state.gov/.
For further information about the documents required to re-enter the United States visit the U.S. Customs and Border Protection website at http://www.cbp.gov/.
Change of Major/Change of Level
Students whose primary major will change to a different Classification of Instructional Programs (CIP) code for the Spring 2014 semester, will be issued a Change of Major I-20 by the ISSO at the beginning of the Spring 2014 semester. These students will receive an e-mail notification when their new I-20 is ready to pick up.
Students who will complete an academic program or end OPT in the Fall 2013 semester and will continue or begin another degree program in the Spring 2014 semester, must obtain a Change of Level I-20 on or before Census Day, January 29, 2014, to maintain their F-1 status.
Be Aware of Employment Scams Promising Entrepreneurial Activities
Several UTD international students have been targeted by a potential scam offering entrepreneurial business projects. F-1 students are limited in their ability to engage in entrepreneurial business activities. Self- employment requires Optional Practical Training (OPT) work authorization. To maintain F-1 status, do not engage in work activities (employment or unemployment, paid or unpaid) without employment authorization. Speak with an international student advisor for more information.
USCIS released the following information for Filipino nationals on 11/15/2013:
In light of Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines (named "Yolanda" by Philippine authorities), U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) would like to remind Filipino nationals that they may be eligible for certain immigration relief measures if requested.
This website also describes some email scams and phishing attacks related to bogus charitable organizations that should be avoided.
CBP Deferred Inspection Office Relocated
The U.S. Customs and Border Protection Deferred Inspection Office has been relocated from Irving, TX to the DFW International Airport. You can find it at Terminal D, Level 1, enterance D22. The office is open from 8:30 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. You must call ahead to make an appointment. Their number is 972-973-9846. They can assist you with the following port of entry errors: automated I-94 error and incorrect information on I-94 card. Read more...
End of Semester Immigration Reminders
Important immigration reminders for F-1 and J-1 students.
Non-immigrant visas for same sex married couples and dependents10/17/2013
Effective immediately, U.S. Embassies and Consulates will adjudicate visa applications for same sex spouses just as they do for opposite sex spouses. They will also adjudicate visa applications for children acquired by same sex marriage.
The ISSO received the notification (below) from our professional organization, warning of a scam where people pretend to be the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).
Email from NAFSA, Association of International Educators:
In recent weeks, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) learned of a new telephone scam targeting USCIS applicants and petitioners. Scammers are using a technique called “Caller ID spoofing” to display a misleading or inaccurate phone number in a recipient’s Caller ID. The scammer poses as a USCIS official and requests personal information (such as Social Security number, passport number, or A-number), identifies supposed issues in the recipient’s immigration records, and asks for payment to correct these records.
If you receive a call like that, USCIS urges you to say “No, thank you” and hang up immediately.
USCIS never asks for any form of payment or personal information over the phone. Do not give payment or personal information over the phone to anyone who claims to be a USCIS official. In general, we encourage you to protect your personal information and not to provide details about your immigration application in any public area.
If you have been a victim of this telephone scam, please report it to the Federal Trade Commission at https://www.ftccomplaintassistant.gov/, or report it to an appropriate state authority. (Visit www.uscis.gov/avoidscams for information on where to report scams in your state.)
If you have a question about your immigration record, please call the National Customer Service Center at 1-800-375-5283, or make an InfoPass appointment by visiting our website at http://infopass.uscis.gov/.
- USCIS Site: Common immigration scams
- USCIS Site: Avoid immigration scams
- USCIS Site: Report immigration scams
- Wells Fargo Site: Bank account fraud and scams
The ISSO urges you to be extremely cautious of anyone requesting personal information or money over the phone. If you have been the victim of this telephone scam, please report it immediately. The ISSO international student advisors are available if you have questions about whether a request from USCIS is legitimate.