April 2010



Office of International Students & Scholars
42 W. Warren
Suite 416, Welcome Center
Detroit, MI 48202

Phone: (313)577-3422

Fax: (313)577-2962

www.oiss.wayne.edu

Winter Office Hours
Monday 8:30am - 6:00pm
Tuesday 8:30am - 6:00pm
Wednesday 8:30am - 6:00pm
Thursday 8:30am - 6:00pm
Friday 8:30am - 5:00pm

Health Insurance Contact
Carol Kassab
Phone: (313)577-3422
Email: ckassab@wayne.edu

Get Involved!
International Student and Scholar Network


International Students and Scholars go through a rigorous process to study and work in the U.S. Entering a new country comes with challenges. International students and scholars make valuable contributions to our society. To assist in their transition, OISS is collaborating with the WSU community and our community partners to provide a variety of resources for international students and scholars when they arrive on campus beginning in the fall 2010 term and we need your support.

The new ISSN (International Student and Scholar Network) will include the following resources and services:
  • Homestay
  • Airport Pickup
  • Furniture and Other Items
See the full atricle for more details.





Personal Safety

As the weather gets warmer, people tend to be outdoors more often and become more relaxed. Please remember to practice personal safety. Here are some tips:
  • Don’t walk alone at night or in isolated areas.
  • Don’t leave your properties (laptop computer, purse, books) without you or a friend watching them.
  • Report any suspicious activities to the University Police
  • On-Campus or within a two-mile radius beyond the university, always call (313) 577-2222, or use the nearest blue light emergency toll-free telephone.
  • Off-campus and outside the two mile radius, call 911.
  • For more safety tips, please visit: www.police.wayne.edu/safetytips.html


OPT Reporting Form & OPT Card

This is a friendly reminder for students on Optional Practical Training (OPT), to submit your OPT Reporting Form to OISS or complete online at: http://www.wsuoiss.wayne.edu/forms/optsignin.php.

Please bring a copy of your EAD Card as soon as you receive it so we can put this in your file and update your information in SEVIS.



Great Decision Series

World Affairs Council of Detroit (WACD) will be hosting the Great Decision Series in room 1347 of the Faculty Administration Building (FAB) 5:30-7:30 p.m. Refreshments will be served from 5:30-6:00 p.m. The World Affairs Council of Detroit (WACD) promotes understanding of international issues and Southeast Michigan's role in a changing world by providing a non-partisan, nation-wide forum for discussion, analysis and debate. WACD seeks to enrich, educate, and spur long-term economic development in our region and to provide new ideas and cultural perspectives in regards to various issues.



International Coffee Hour

Mark your calendars and enjoy socializing over lunch at the Towers Residential Suite.

All International students at WSU are invited to attend Coffee Hour to enjoy a freshly prepared meal while engaging in conversation with fellow international and domestic students, Cultural Diversity Council (CDC) and OISS members.





OISS TRIP Program

Are you an International student or scholar that needs to go shopping and don’t have a car? OISS can help! OISS is pleased to announce the Transportation and Recreation for International Participants (TRIP) Program.





Cultural Diversity Council

The Cultural Diversity Council (CDC) is a student group that plans social activities for international students. This is a great way to make new friends, learn about the campus and Detroit and have fun. This group can be contacted at cdc@wayne.edu





Cultural Diversity Council Paintball Trip 2010

Come join us for some fun on the paintball field!
Date: Saturday April 10, 2010
Time: 11AM-6PM
Location: Lone Wolf Paintball in Mt.Clemens, MI


Read the entire story for more details.





What You Need to Know about the New DOL Prevailing Wage Process

There are currently over 600 non-immigrant researchers and faculty at WSU in various non-immigrant statuses conducting cutting edge research, and educating our students; and close to half are in H-1B status. Because of changes in the prevailing wage determination (PWD) process from a 24-48 hour response to a 60 day response from the U.S. Department of Labor. . .





Premium Processing for H-1B

Although departments pay the United States and Immigration Services (USCIS) an additional $1,000 for premium processing (15 day response time) for the H-1B petition, does not mean that the entire H-1B petition process takes only 15 days. Please allow enough time for the entire H-1B process which includes the prevailing wage request, LCA and creating the petition.





New Scholar Orientation

This is an important reminder that all new WSU employees in H-1B, J-1, TN, O-1, E-3, and H1B1 visa categories are required to attend new scholar orientation held every Monday and Thursday at 2 p.m. in the OISS conference room. It is a requirement that you sign up for the New Scholar Orientation at: oiss.wayne.edu/departments/orientation.php

Feel free to contact Rebecca Perez at ax9667@wayne.edu should you have any questions.



OISS Programs for Scholars for the year 2010

Are you interested in having OISS (Office of International Students and Scholars) conduct informative immigration workshops that are tailored to your specific needs or a specific topic that has been pre-determined by OISS? All of the workshops will include new and upcoming regulations that will impact your unit, and documentation needed for processing petition requests. Contact Chamu Gowrishankar at aw7910@wayne.edu or Carol Kassab ckassab@wayne.edu and let us know what information you need from us to help you with your foreign employment needs.

See the full story for a list of currently scheduled workshops for 2010.





J-1 Intern Category

The Office of International Students and Scholars is pleased to announce that Wayne State University is offering a J-1 Intern Program. This exciting new program allows departments to host/sponsor an undergraduate or graduate foreign student as a unpaid or paid J-1 Intern for up to 12 months. The internship must fulfill the educational objectives for his or her current degree or certificate program at his or her home institution in their home country. Please contact OISS at 313-577-3422 or send us an email at j1intern@wayne.edu if you need additional information.

The sponsoring department should use the title “J1 Intern” and not WSU full-time employment titles such as Research Associate, or Research Assistant since these categories are used for full time employment purposes. The J-1 Intern Category is strictly an internship and not an employment category although it can be a paid internship. This is also a pathway for future student enrollment at WSU.



Important Visa Information

Please be advised that it is recommended that all scholars obtain their visa in their home country. We have had some scholars be indefinitely delayed in Canada due to administrative background checks. Once an administrative background has been initiated by the reviewing consular officer, it can take up to several months which could jeopardize the scholar’s employment at WSU. Please contact OISS whenever a scholar plans on traveling abroad.



Important Permanent Resicendy (PR) Information

Please see the entire article for more information on:
  • Changing from EB-2 to EB-1
  • Sponsoring Permanent Residency (PR) for Faculty and Professors
  • April Visa Bulletin Shows Modest Advances for EB-2 China and EB-3 Professional and Skilled Worker Categories in the Permanent Residency Process
  • EB-1, EB-2 and EB-3 Priority Date Cutoffs





USCIS Site Visits

As previously mentioned in our monthly OISS Scholar Newsletters, USCIS is conducting random site visits to employers that sponsor H-1Bs. We have already had 3 visits from contractors working for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). The purpose of these visits are to verify that information in the H-1B petition is correct. The DHS representative meets with OISS and separately with the H-1B WSU employee.





DOS Proposes Increase in Passport Fees

The Department of State has proposed an increase in fees for passport application services:
  • From $100 to $135 for a first-time U.S. passport book for adults (age 16 and over)
  • From $75 to $110 for passport renewal (age 16 and over only)
  • From $85 to $105 for a passport for minors (under age 16)
The fee for expedited service will remain $60.

Over the last five years, the Department noted, demand for passports has increased to an average of 15 million per year. In fiscal year (FY) 2005, the Department issued 10.1 million passports; issuances peaked at 18.4 million in FY 2007.

The U.S. Passport Book and U.S. Passport Card for adults are valid for 10 years. Passports for minors under age 16 are valid for five years.

The proposed rule is available at edocket.access.gpo.gov/2010/pdf/2010-2816.pdf.



F-1 Ph.D Students with GRA/GTA/GSA

This is a reminder for departments, if an F-1 Ph.D student is in their last semester, will be defending before the end of their last semester, and have not applied for post-completion OPT (Optional Practical Training) with a start date prior to the end of the last semester can continue their assistantship until the end of the semester. But if the student has applied for post-completion OPT with a start date prior to the end of the last semester in which the student is defending cannot continue with the assistantship beyond the program end date provided by the student and department on the OPT Request Form. We recommend that the academic advisor or chair review the program completion date on the OPT recommendation form before approving the recommendation.



Question of the Month

Do I need special authorization from OISS to take less than full time credits during spring/summer if I am a continuing student at WSU?

Answer:
No. If you have completed at least one semester with WSU, you are considered a continuing student and qualified to use the spring/summer term as your "annual vacation." You can take less than full time, and even work on campus for 40 hours without authorization, providing that you will be enrolled full time for Fall 2010 or obtain an Exception to Full Time enrollment for the Fall 2010 term.