New OPT Application Resources on OISA Website

Dear international seniors,
I am writing to let you know that we just added additional resources on the OISA website to help F-1 students who are applying for their one-year post-completion Optional Practical Training (OPT) based on the feedback we received from you.
Here are the links:
If you need help with your Form I-765, please visit us during the drop-in hours. We can also proofread your Form I-765 for you once. Please send a copy of your completed I-765 to oisa@wesleyan.edu. We will get back to you in 7-10 business days.
Please note that you need to submit your OPT request via the ISS Portal. Directions for how to submit all your documents are listed on here.
Feel free to reach out if you have additional questions. Good luck with your application!
Chia-Ying

Chia-Ying S. Pan | Director, International Student Services

Office of International Student Affairs Wesleyan University
Room 024, North College 237 High Street, Middletown, CT 06459
Zoom Meeting Room | Schedule an Appointment | Spring 2021 Drop-In Hours

F-1 Seniors: OPT Workshop Tomorrow @ 12 noon, EST – 2/22

Dear F-1 seniors,
This is a friendly reminder for the OPT workshop tomorrow:

Optional Practical Training (OPT): Filling out the I-765 Form

Tuesday, February 23, 12:00-1:00 p.m. EST

In this workshop, OISA staff will provide step-by-step guidance to fill out Form I-765. If you have attended the session last semester, it is still helpful to come to this workshop. Not much has changed specifically about the I-765; however, the USCIS lockbox location has changed. Also, the OPT fee was changed from $410 to $550 now back to $410. We want to make sure that everyone is aware of these important updates.

Please do the following before you attend the workshop:

  • Download the Form I-765
  • Read through the instructions for Form I-765
  • Have the following documents handy when you come to the workshop:
    • your current and all previous I-20s
    • your passport
    • your F-1 visa page
    • your most recent I-94
    • your Social Security Card (if you have one)
    • a pen with black ink (required by the U.S. government

The session will be recorded. If you are unable to attend the session, please email oisa@wesleyan.edu to obtain a link to the recorded session.

After you attend tomorrow’s workshop, you can get your completed I-765 proofread ONCE by a professional staff. This is an offer to help you with your form, not a requirement. You can choose to skip this step if you are able to fill out the form independently. Please submit a polished version of your I-765 as if you are ready to submit it to the government. If you have questions about any of the items on the form, attend one of the drop-in hours to get your questions answered BEFORE you submit for proofreading. The turnaround time is 7-10 business days.

Your OPT application materials need to be submitted via the ISS Portal. OISA does not have access to your submitted materials until you hit the “submit” button on the top. Please email oisa@wesleyan.edu once you submit your application materials. We will write back to confirm that everything has been received. You can expect your OPT recommendation I-20 within 7-10 business days if everything looks good. If there are questions about your application or we found a mistake in your application, you will be contacted via email.

See you at the workshop tomorrow,

Chia-Ying

Chia-Ying S. Pan | Director, International Student Services

Office of International Student Affairs Wesleyan University
Room 024, North College 237 High Street, Middletown, CT 06459
Zoom Meeting Room | Schedule an Appointment | Spring 2021 Drop-In Hours

 

OISA Zoom Session for New & Returning Students – 1/15

Spring 2021 Q&A Zoom Session for New and Returning F-1 Students

Date: Friday, January 15, 2021

Time: 9:00-10:30 am EST (use a time zone converter to find out your local time)

Students may submit questions using this form. All questions submitted by 11:59 pm EST, Tuesday, January 12, 2021 will be answered in the live session. This session is for both undergraduate and graduate F-1 students. Parents and families are welcome to attend.

IRS COVID-19 Stimulus Checks and F/J Students

This is a reposted message from OISA and the Controller’s Office.

Dear international students,

Please see the message below from Christine Rodrigue about COVID-19 stimulus checks. If you have additional questions, please reach out to Christine at crodrigue@wesleyan.edu.

Hope you all are well!

Chia-Ying

 

Dear F and J Students and Scholars,

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the U.S. Federal Stimulus Package enacted in April 2020 was intended to help taxpayers, businesses, tax-exempt organizations and others affected by the coronavirus.  The package included Economic Impact Payments, more commonly referred to as Stimulus Checks, to individual taxpayers.

In December 2020, the U.S. government approved the second pandemic stimulus payment under the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act, providing an additional one-time payment of up to $600 per eligible taxpayer.

Individuals eligible to receive the stimulus checks:

  • must be a US Citizen or Resident Alien for tax purposes
  • cannot be claimed as a dependent by another taxpayer
  • must have a valid Social Security Number (SSN), and
  • have gross income of up to $75,000 ($150,000 for married couples)

You are not entitled to receive stimulus checks if you are:

  • A Non-Resident Alien (F-1 and J-1 Students are Non-Resident Aliens during the first five calendar years of presence in the U.S.)
  • A single taxpayer with an adjusted gross income (AGI) above $99,000
  • A head of a household with an AGI over $136,500
  • A married couple with an AGI over $198,000
  • A child over 16 or a college student under age 24

If you received a stimulus check, you should verify your 2019 tax year U.S. residency statusIf you determine that you were a Resident for tax purposes in 2019, then you are entitled to the stimulus checks.  If you determine that you were a Non-Resident for tax purposes in 2019, then you received the payment/s in error, and you should follow the instructions provided by Sprintax and the IRS (links below) to return the payment/s to the IRS.  By keeping a stimulus check that was issued in error, you may incur penalty and interest payments or jeopardize your future U.S. visa or Green Card applications.


Everything a non-resident in the U.S. needs to know about the COVID stimulus checksSprintax provides further clarity and guidance for international non-immigrant students and employees, specifically non-resident aliens for tax purposes.

IRS Economic Impact Payment Information Center

I hope you are doing well and staying healthy.

 

Take good care,

Christine Rodrigue

Sr. Accountant/Tax Specialist

Wesleyan University

Controller’s Office

International Compensation and Taxation

Notes from OISA for December 2020 Completers – 12/18

OISA provided the following information as a reminder for students on F-1 visas completing their degree requirements in Fall 2020.

Please read the information below about your F-1 status:
  • Please check your current I-20 to make sure that it has the correct program end date (it should say 12/19/2020). If you need a new I-20 with an updated program end date, please let me know. If you are currently on campus, I can drop of your updated I-20 at p-safe for you to pick up. If you are currently off campus/outside of the United States, please purchase a shipping label via UEMS. An updated I-20 will be shipped to you. Please keep ALL your I-20s in a safe place. If you would like to claim any of your F-1 benefits, you will be asked to present all your past I-20s.
  • Please read the “Prepare for your End of Program” page carefully. This page contains information about grace period if you are currently in the United States. If you need your SEVIS records transferred to a different SEVP-certified school, please let me know ASAP. The transfer must be completed within 60 days after the program end date listed on your I-20.
  • If you are interested in applying for Optional Practical Training (OPT) after graduation, please read the OPT page on the OISA website. Please note that you MUST be physically in the United States to submit your OPT application to USCIS.
  • If you do not wish to apply for OPT, your F-1 status ends at the end of your grace period or the day you exit the United States, whichever comes first. You will NOT be able to use your F-1 visa/I-20 to come back to Wesleyan for the graduation ceremony in May 2021 if there is an in-person celebration. You will need to enter the U.S. using a different visa that matches the purpose of the trip (likely a B1/B2 visa – a business/tourist visa), even if your F-1 visa has not expired. Please check with your local U.S. embassy about how you can obtain a B1/B2 visa if desired.

New Fair Trade Virtual Study Abroad Classes for Spring 2021!

New Courses Now in WesMaps!

CGST321 Theatre for Social Change

  • Taught in Spanish
  • Learn with Ecuadorian participants
  • Cross-listed with DANC320

CGST322 Storying and Re-Storying (Storytelling for Social Change)

  • Taught in Spanish
  • Learn with Ecuadorian participants
  • Cross-listed with DANC320

CGST340 Identity and Pacha

  • Taught in English
  • Learn from Ecuadorian educators
  • Cross-listed with ANTH250

CGST341 Critical Interculturality and the Pedagogy of Unlearning

  • Taught in English
  • Learn from Ecuadorian educators
  • Cross-listed with ANTH241

Interactive, experiential online courses provided by our partner in Ecuador

No additional tuition

Time zone same as CT

Fair Trade Virtual Study Abroad Course Flyer (2)

Last OPT Workshop Tomorrow @ 12Noon, EST – 10/20

This is a repost of the message sent from Chia-Ying Pan to international students on October 19th.

Dear international juniors and seniors,

Please join the OISA tomorrow (October 20) for the last Optional Practical Training (OPT) workshop of the season. This workshop is for F-1 students who wish to work in the United States after graduation.

Optional Practical Training (OPT): Live Q&As

Tuesday, October 20, 12:00-1:00 p.m. EDT

Zoom link: https://wesleyan.zoom.us/j/99511794469

This workshop will address the frequently asked questions about OPT and OPT STEM extension. We will help you make realistic plans to complete your OPT application, answer any questions you may have about I-765 and have a discussion with you if you are not sure if applying for OPT is an appropriate choice for you after graduation.

If you would like the recordings of the previous two OPT sessions, please email oisa@wesleyan.edu.

I look forward to seeing many of you tomorrow! Bring your questions!!

Chia-Ying

Chia-Ying Sophia Pan, M.S. Ed. | Director, International Student Services

Office of International Student Affairs Wesleyan University

Room 024, North College 237 High Street, Middletown, CT 06459

P. (860) 685-3031 OISA Facebook 

Fall 2020 virtual drop-in hours: 

Tuesdays, 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. Eastern Time (zoom link)

Wednesdays, 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Eastern Time (zoom link)

Fridays, 3:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. Eastern Time (zoom link)

OPT Workshop Tomorrow, 10/14 @ 12 Noon EST

This is a repost of the message sent by the Chia-Ying Pan on October 13th.

Dear international juniors and seniors,

Please join the OISA tomorrow (October 14) for the second Optional Practical Training (OPT) workshop of the season. This workshop is for F-1 students who wish to work in the United States after graduation.

Optional Practical Training (OPT): Filling Out the I-765 Form  

Wednesday, October 14, 12:00-1:00 p.m. EDT

Zoom link: https://wesleyan.zoom.us/j/97756274340

In the workshop, OISA staff will provide step-by-step guidance to fill out the I-765 (application for employment authorization) form. Please visit the USCIS website and download the I-765 form before you attend the workshop. Using the current I-765 form is critical to your OPT approval. As of today, the most current form should say “Expires 07/31/2022” on the top right corner and “Edition 08/25/20” at the bottom left cover of each page.

I look forward to seeing many of you tomorrow!

Chia-Ying

Chia-Ying Sophia Pan, M.S. Ed. | Director, International Student Services

Office of International Student Affairs Wesleyan University

Room 024, North College 237 High Street, Middletown, CT 06459

(860) 685-3031 |OISA Facebook 

Fall 2020 virtual drop-in hours: 

Tuesdays, 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. Eastern Time (zoom link)

Wednesdays, 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Eastern Time (zoom link)

Fridays, 3:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. Eastern Time (zoom link)

OISA Drop-in Hours for F-1 Visa Students – 7/21- 7/24

The following message is from Chia-Ying Pan of the Office of International Student Affairs (OISA).

Dear International Students,

Thank you for attending the Zoom FAQ sessions last week. For those who were not able to attend, below are the links and passwords to the recorded sessions:

Zoom Session #1:
https://wesleyan.zoom.us/rec/share/3pcqCbKr_VtJSJHu4x2HXYQGBYP6aaa8gCAd_fAKn0-AX0AFge0dIKjBm9Yvsptv
Password: 3i&mu!9+

Zoom Session #2:
https://wesleyan.zoom.us/rec/share/4exFKaitxkpOac_B2m7QW74NWY_qaaa80yVM-aEIzE1_fPdmOlWTv1Bo0ZuYmrxq
Password: 4p#5@3hZ

The slides used in the Zoom sessions are attached in this email. Also, the most updated FAQs for new and returning F-1 visa holders are now published on the re-activating campus page for your reference.

Many of you asked if you can meet with me to talk further about your specific situations, below are the date/time/Zoom links for the upcoming drop-in hours. You do not need to sign up in advance. Just show up at one of the drop-in hours at the time indicated below. Please note that the time slots listed below are in Eastern Daylight Time (EDT). If you are in a different time zone, find out what time it is for you using a time zone convertor. Middletown, CT is in the same time zoom as New York, NY. You can put in New York in the time zone convertor since they website does not recognize Middletown, CT.

Tuesday, July 21, 2:00-3:00 pm EDT
Zoom link: https://wesleyan.zoom.us/j/97487831814?pwd=anJUbWVxN1ZmUWFyQkRzWUNlRy9yQT09
Meeting ID: 974 8783 1814
Passcode: 782959

Wednesday, July 22, 12:00 noon-1:00 pm EDT
Zoom link: https://wesleyan.zoom.us/j/97485159409?pwd=ZGlySk9RVlc4QWlPdGZvdHFRZjN0UT09
Meeting ID: 974 8515 9409
Passcode: 945433

Thursday, July 23, 2:00-3:00 pm EDT
Zoom link: https://wesleyan.zoom.us/j/98223226246?pwd=azEzSEU3blpublhLMUdUMDVTTE9zQT09
Meeting ID: 982 2322 6246
Passcode: 853096

Friday, July 24, 10:00-11:00 am EDT
Zoom link: https://wesleyan.zoom.us/j/93026947462?pwd=ZTVyRDJYamQrLy93TFdnOUVsTmNOQT09
Meeting ID: 930 2694 7462
Passcode: 819832

If we have overflow from these four group advising sessions, I will add more time slots. Both new and returning international students are welcome to attend these drop-in hours. I am committed to answer all your questions and help you make a decision that works the best for you.

Take care,
Chia-Ying

Chia-Ying Sophia Pan, M.S. Ed. | Director, International Student Services
Office of International Student Affairs | Wesleyan University
Room 024, North College | 237 High Street, Middletown, CT 06459
P. (860) 685-3031 | OISA Facebook