Pre-Arrival Information Session for International Students

September 21, 2019 0 By Stanley Isaacs

Good Evening Everyone or Good Morning to those of you that are joining us from overseas outside the United States. My
name is Linda Harris, international student advisor in the International
Student and Scholar Services Office at San Jose State University. The agenda or
the purpose of this webinar is to provide necessary information to aid you
as you prepare to come to the US and then to transition to student life at
San Jose State University. We will be discussing resources reminder to-do list
items before you come to SJSU and then after you’ve arrived on campus. As new
students coming to SJSU, by now you probably have received multiple
communications from the University regarding SJSU orientation programs. As a
reminder, if you haven’t already done so after you made it, we ask that you
complete the next step intent to enroll process. So, this includes paying the
enrollment deposit and then once you’ve paid your enrollment deposit you’ll be
receiving further instructions about the required orientation program depending
on your admin status if you’re incoming freshman which we also refer to
as frosh, a transfer student, or if you’re a graduate student. So we’re going to be
returning to the top of orientation later in the presentation. In terms of
visa who needs an F-1 Visa, if you’re currently abroad coming to SJSU
to begin your studies, you’ve never held F-1 status, you’ll more likely need to
apply for our F-1 student visa. So, what you want to do is you want to obtain
your initial attendance form i-20 from the mission’s office, pay the I-901 SEVIS
fee prior to applying for that student visa. Canadian citizens are exempt from
having to obtain an F-1 Visa, so if we have any Canadians
participating today then the F-1 Visa application process wouldn’t apply
to you. Now, transfer students, we have any
transfer students today. Transfer students who already have a one F-1
Visa and the passport, they’re not required to obtain another one just
because they’re transferring from the previous institution to San Jose State.
So, if you do need to apply for F-1 student visa, we recommend that you visit
the US Department of State’s website. It’s “” for more information.
Now, each embassy or consulate, they have their own visa application procedures
instructions. So, you’ll need to contact the appropriate embassy or consulate
directly for detailed information. If you are interested we do have tips in
preparing for your recent interview via the college that CPGE
youtube video. So, check that out if you’re interested in and learning about
Visa interview tips. So, once you have obtained your F-1 Visa, initial attendance new students are permitted to enter the U.S. within 30 days of the
program start date listed on your I-20. There are exceptions again if you’re a student transferring to SJSU from another U.S. institution, you’re not limited
to entering 30 days. Okay, on your screen are some sample immigration documents
that you’ll need to enter the US. So, you’ll need to have a valid passport F-1
Visa, we just talked about, SJSU issued I-20. On the right side is a copy of
electronic I-94 record and F-1 emission stamp that you will be receiving from the US Customs and Border Protection abbreviated CBP after you made it into
the U.S. Important note, nowadays not all port of entries are
providing a mission stamp in the passport so that’s the example there on the right. Just note that if you don’t get an admission stamp in your passport
it doesn’t mean that you know there’s anything wrong.
Regarding the electronic I-94, you won’t be able to retrieve your electronic I-94
record until after you arrive in the US. Okay, so we will be sending information
to our students regarding how to retrieve your i-94 and how to upload
your immigration documents. Alright! For those of you traveling to the U.S.
arriving at a port of entry like let’s say an airport, be familiar with the CBP
inspection process. You’ll need to be prepared. One of the things that we do
recommend is that you carry your immigration documents with you such as
your passport, your visa, SJSU admin letter, SEVIS fee payment receipt. We do
not recommend that you pack these important documents in your checked
luggage. So, as you clear customs be patient if you are asked by a CBP
officer for a reason for entering the US, answer truthfully with information about
the degree program, if you’re pursuing a bachelor’s or master’s degree, maybe your
major length of study, you know, the CBP officer
maybe asking about your final destination, as well as, what your
intentions are which again if you’re coming to SJSU F-1, you want to say that
you are pursuing full-time studies. Do not be alarmed if you’re pulled into
secondary inspection. Admission to the U.S. is at the full discretion of the CBP officer. If you do not have like sufficient documentation provided the
CBP, they may still allow you to enter but on a temporary basis for example
they may give you this form I-515a and instructions to see an ISS advisor and
then of course, if they have any sufficient reason that CBP officers may also deny your entry. So, as before you arrive, we also want you
to plan how you’re getting from the airport to campus or to your temporary
housing or permanent housing. There are many ways to get to San Jose or SJSU
campus keep in mind that if you choose public transportation, you’ll want to
plan ahead as there are different services, right, if you’re coming by car,
traveling by bus, Cal train, VTA. The routes can be difficult to navigate,
it may require you to do some transfers, etc. so, just plan ahead if you especially
if you’re not familiar with the Bay Area. Alright, so let’s quickly talk about
housing. We hope that most of you have already
secured housing on-campus or off-campus. Demand for on-campus housing is pretty
high, so your options may be limited if you’re just now researching housing
options. What we recommend that you do is that you check the University
Housing Services website for particular if you’re interested in on-campus
housing and then don’t forget about staying at the International House. There
might still be opening at the iHouse. If you’re looking for off-campus housing
options such as renting an apartment with friends, do be aware of scams and
frauds. You’ll want to do your research right before you sign any contract or
you give someone a down payment or money. Also, on your screen is a link to the
college’s YouTube video on “What are my housing options?” So do, please, take a look
at that. Okay, so we encourage our students to arrive on or before the
report date listed on your i-20. Arriving late may cause you to miss orientation
and classes as well as incurring late enrollment fees. We’ve put together a
short list of things for you to do after you’ve arrived after you moved into your
new home by now it’s likely you have received multiple emails from the
University enrollment management team as well as ISS about various orientation
programs and about completing your to-do list items, clearing registration holds
before enrollment as well. So all this information may be overwhelming or maybe
confusing. As new international students to get started really here at SJSU, you
are going to be asked to complete additional requirements compared to
let’s say a domestic U.S. student for example our international students have
to do this canvas immigration document upload, what we mean by that is as an
international student, we are going to ask you to upload your immigration documents of your passport,
visa, I-20, I-94 record, that I mentioned early etc., provide us a
residential address all this information using canvas. This is kind of our
electronic checking process and this is for ISS office the international student
scholar Services office so that we can later register your service record and
report to the federal government that you have arrived and enrolled at SJSU. In
terms of orientation programs, new international students will need to
complete both the university sponsored orientation programs for
freshman, transfers or graduate students. In addition to what we call “Global
Spartan Welcome,” but if you’re a freshman the University or the campus
orientation program for you is called “Sparta Camp,” for transfer students
it’s called “Spartan Experience for Transfers” and then graduate students
have their own graduate student orientation program. All international
students will also need to attend the Global Spartan Welcome which I will
call GSW for short. What we want you to understand is that both orientation
programs are required so if again if your freshman you’re going to attend
Sparta Camp in addition to Global Spartan
Welcome, if you’re a transfer student you’ll need to attend the Spartan
Experience and Global Spartan Welcome and if you’re a grad student we want you
to attend that one-day orientation program for grad students in addition to
Global Spartan welcome. So without going to image detailed I do ask that you
refer to your welcome email that you should have received from ISS about
registering for GSW. We can also provide you a link and GSW information to you at
the end of the presentation. So just a quick announcement since our
registration numbers for GSW for new limited freshmen are low if you are
incoming freshmen participate in today’s webinar and you have not
registered to attend Global Spartan Welcome, the freshman orientation program, please register by July 15, again the Global
Spartan welcome is the orientation program that is being sponsored by ISS (International Student Scholar Services). Okay, as you get are getting ready to
enroll in classes, we want to make sure that you’re familiar with the MySJSU
portal. So don’t confuse it with Spartan link which is a separate online
orientation components for incoming students put together by the University. So, you will be logging into your my SJSU portal to do such things as adding and
dropping classes. You’ll use the portal to check your to-do list and for any
messages, you will use it to check your grades, pay fees up-to-date personal
information such as an address, phone number, email. Most SJSU offices will also be
using MySJSU as a formal method to communicate any admission, enrollment and
appointment information, your fees, transcript information, and important
deadlines. So, it is your responsibility to check your account frequently before
you enroll for classes at MySJSU, you will need to clear all account holds. Now
University requires all new students to attend the required mandatory
orientations session, already mentioned so that’s going to be Sparta Camp, Spartan Experience for transfers, or graduate student orientation before you allow to
enroll. If you miss your on-campus or University sponsored orientation
program your admission can be withdrawn and if you’ve already enrolled in
classes you couldn’t even move from this classes. During your on-campus
orientation, you’ll be receiving advising information and help with planning your
academic schedule. Also you want to submit any outstanding to-do list items,
so again please check your MySJSU account, the Student Center. Some of the
things that might be on your to-do list item is to submit final transcripts by
the appropriate deadline which I believe is around July 15th. International
students are required to purchase SJSU health insurance it’s administrated by
JCB it’s a brokerage firm for Aetna which is the actual insurance company.
The SJSU health insurance plan for international students provide coverage
for accidental injury or sickness but it also includes medical evacuation and
repatriation which is needed by non-US citizens. Students will need to enroll
and purchase health insurance online and we do have a link on the ISS website. In
terms of immunizations, all incoming students for fall 2019 are required to
submit proof of the required immunization prior to the first day of
classes for the fall term. So, the the Student Health Center
is asking students to upload his or her proof of immunization through the
immunization portal link available on the Student Health Center website and we
can give a link we can provide that link to you later. For more information if
you’re needing information about that required immunization visit the SJSU
Student Health Center, getting health care and they have a separate
musician tab on their website. So before we talk about course
registration let me back up and quickly mention the benefits of attending Global
Spartan Welcome. So, at GSW, you’re going to be learning
opponent information about maintaining status full-time enrollment requirement
for undergrad and grad. You’re going to be exploring cultural transitions
learning about American culture, you’ll gain tips and strategies for academic
success connect with the various campus resources and meet the ISS staff. So
again hopefully you’re not confused about the required orientation
programs but if not just at the Q&A if I need to explain anything I’ll be happy
to do that. So moving on once you’ve registered for
classes, your tuition fees will be calculated and the amount due will be
posted in your Student Center for more information about the payment deadlines
signing up for installment plans and payment methods you’ll want to visit the
SJSU brochures office and then finally the student ID or we call it the tower
card is free to matriculated students it’ll be available for you to pick up at
the cashiers office window in the Student Service Center you’ll need to
provide your passport or other government-issued photo ID to obtain
your Tower Card and again you’ll need to do this in person.
You’ll receive more information about the tower card itself at one of the
University-sponsored orientation program. Okay so the final slide is a screenshot
of the main campus, you’ve got the key buildings highlighted in black. On the
map the building names are abbreviated. So hopefully, you can see that I’ve
highlighted this building with the abbreviation SU that is the Diaz Compean Student Union where most of the Global Spartan Welcome
orientations will be held. To get more details, to get a printable campus map,
driving in directions to SSU as well as parking services, visit our homepage and
then there’s a parking and maps tab so if you click on that you’ll be able to
get access to a printable campus map.