We urge you to also contact your home country’s local consulate or embassy in the U.S. for support and information regarding travel home. Application requirements for International Applicants differ in the following ways: Required records or transcripts Evidence of English Language Proficiency: All applicants from countries in which the official language is not English are required to submit current TOEFL […] See BIO’s enrollment guidance for, , you are subject to new student enrollment requirements and are not permitted to enroll in fully remote instruction. If you are currently approved for OPT, you may need to determine if you can work remotely for your employer. However, it is unclear whether use of unemployment benefits could make a student likely to seen as someone who could become a public charge. We will work with you to determine the best path forward. With near-daily changes in the understanding of SARS-CoV-2 and how COVID-19 is transmitted and spread, researchers are challenged with mountains of data in the race to end the outbreak. International students are ineligible for federal, state, and need-based university financial aid. We will work with our clients on a case-by-case basis to determine the best path forward. Students are more concerned about barriers to travel rather than financial worries, according to Ivor Emmanuel, director of Berkeley International Office. If you are currently maintaining a student, scholar or employee immigration status in the U.S. and you depart, BIO cannot guarantee your ability to return to the U.S. in a timely manner, which could have an impact on your U.S. visa status if you are unable to resume to continue your requirements as a student, scholar or employee. . If you plan to enter the U.S. to attend UC Berkeley in a. when you are ready to request a new I-20/DS-2019. See BIO’s enrollment guidance for continuing students. University of California and other local resources, BIO Director Response to International Student COVID-19 Survey, Berkeley Global Engagement Office International Travel Resources, COVID-19 Presidential Proclamation on Suspension of Entry for Travelers from China, COVID-19 Presidential Proclamation on Suspension of Entry for Travelers from Iran, Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Coronavirus Disease 2019 Information for Travel, CDC: Travelers from Countries with Widespread Sustained (Ongoing) Transmission Arriving in the United States, NAFSA: Association of International Educators Coronavirus Critical Resources (may require registration), World Health Organization (WHO): Coping with Stress during the 2019-nCoV Outbreak, Copyright © 2021 UC Regents; all rights reserved, BIO is operating virtually due to Alameda County’s “shelter in place” order. You can find instructions on all BIO, Please note that you do not need an updated travel endorsement on your I-20/DS-2019 to leave the country. Some options include: Consider applying for post-completion employment: Consider continuing your academic degree program if further enrollment is appropriate for you in your degree program. Marc Fisher, UC Berkeley’s vice chancellor for administration, sent the following message to the campus community on Friday, March 6: We are writing today to share with you the latest updates, policies and general guidance regarding the coronavirus (COVID-19) and travel. (NIF). The Global Edge team is working closely with the UC Berkeley administration to monitor the evolving COVID-19 situation. Recent press coverage featuring UC Berkeley researchers who are rising to meet the complex challenges of COVID-19 by addressing immediate health care and engineering challenges and considering the broad societal, economic and ethical implications. All aspects of university work are currently strained by the Covid-19, but international programs, including research collaboration, are especially pressured. Please be sure to check back often for updates. Being seen as a potential public charge could negatively impact applications for future visas or immigration benefits. If Fall 2020 instruction is all remote OR if you are unable to enter the U.S. to begin your program for Fall 2020, BIO will be required to change your DS-2019 start date to January 2021, the start of Spring 2021. Reductions in course load must be approved by your College and by the Berkeley International Office in advance of making any schedule changes. The following guidance was updated August 26, 2020 and is effective until further notice. Can I travel internationally? Students on OPT should be sure that the work continues to meet, for eligible employment. Event Details. Leading up to the election, and following the election, we encourage our international community to seek resources to support their mental health and well-being as we navigate this period of anxiety and change. Berkeley International Office's mission is to enhance the academic experiences of international students and scholars by providing the highest levels of knowledge and expertise in advising, immigration services, advocacy, and programming to the UC Berkeley campus community. on the BIO website, including the OPT tutorial, application instructions, employment/address reporting, and required travel documents. For additional information, please see the, Even within the U.S., different regions are experiencing travel impacts and restrictions. If you entered or will enter the U.S. in F-1 or J-1 status after March 9, 2020, you are subject to new student enrollment requirements and are not permitted to enroll in fully remote instruction. To be eligible for F-1 CPT or OPT authorization, students must have been enrolled continuously for 1 academic year in Active F-1 status. If you think it would be better for you to continue your degree program at this time, rather than continue with your OPT application, please contact a BIO adviser regarding your situation, so that we can determine your next steps. Calculated based on students living in the residence halls. Please contact a BIO adviser before you take any steps to officially withdraw or cancel future semesters. as soon as possible for guidance on your situation. If the information you provided in your survey is no longer accurate, or your I-20 adjustment does not reflect your plans for entry, please contact us. If Fall 2020 instruction is all remote OR if you are unable to enter the US to begin your program for Fall 2020, BIO will be required to change your I-20 start date to January 2021, the start of Spring 2021. Please know that these behaviors have no place in the UC Berkeley community. Rumur Dowling is a graduate student in the English department and the organizer of two UC Berkeley community mutual aid programs. Please know that these reactions are normal and there are ways in which you can take care of yourself during these stressful times. Yes, it’s OK! If you have questions about your student billing account, please contact Cal Student Central. You were previously enrolled at UC Berkeley and took a gap year. Because you have not yet entered the U.S., you are still a new student even though you have been enrolled since Fall 2020. Please contact BIO as soon as possible so that we can advise you on your available options. (If your new Initial I-20 needs an adjustment or replacement, we can send any additional updated I-20 documents electronically.) , because their documents cannot be verified or if they are missing appropriate travel documentation. In Spring 2021, you are still a new student for visa purposes. The current DHS guidance allows continuing Active students to be outside of the U.S. for more than 5 months. BIO will continue to update this as we discover new resources. News and Announcements from Berkeley Law See below for law school specific communications: On June 22, 2020, the April 22, 2020 proclamation was extended to December 31, 2020. The NIF will allow you to submit a request for your F-1 or J-1 documents for return. During this period we continue to process cases remotely and departments can continue to submit cases as usual. You will only need a valid signature to, the F-1 or J-1 visa stamp in your passport, No! USCIS still requires documentation of copies with a “wet” or handwritten signature. SEVIS Reactivation: This option is available for students who meet specific criteria for taking a 1 semester leave of absence. Please continue to check the USCIS website for updates or visit the USCIS COVID-19 response page. With the ongoing concerns around COVID-19, BIO understands that there may be concern and anxiety about family around the world. (If your new Initial I-20 needs an adjustment or replacement, we can send any additional updated I-20 documents electronically.) But, after your entry to the US in January 2021, your F-1 record will be Active for only 1 semester and you will not qualify for CPT in Summer 2020. Continuing students who are outside the U.S. and plan to enroll in online classes should maintain a full course of study to retain their F-1or J-1 status and to remain in Active SEVIS status. If you are currently outside of the United States and are unable to return, please, to let us know about your situation. Other than students who come from a U.S. sanctioned country (Iran, Cuba, North Korea, Ukraine - Crimea Region, Sudan, Syria) new or continuing students are free to enroll from abroad and study online! International students are ineligible for federal, state, and need-based university financial aid. , the systemwide portal for making those reports. If you urgently need an updated I-20 for a visa interview appointment prior to February 15, 2021, please contact us and include a copy of your visa appointment confirmation. The NIF will allow you to submit a request for your F-1 or J-1 documents for return. See BIO’s Spring 2021 enrollment guidance for, Since you will not enter the U.S. for the Spring 2021 semester, you will not be in F-1 Active SEVIS status and will not accrue physical presence as it relates to your F-1 or J-1 status. We will begin making I-20 adjustments at the start of Spring 2021 in January. for more information about current travel restrictions. Over the last 4 years, the Trump administration has proposed and instituted policies that have negatively impacted international students, scholars, and employees. Registered UC Berkeley undergraduate and graduate students are automatically enrolled in the Berkeley Student Health Insurance Plan (SHIP) as a way to meet this mandate. Please submit a Program Extension Request to extend your I-20 or DS-2019. to let us know about your situation. For students who were in good standing when they left UC Berkeley: Yes, all technical courses taken to fulfill major requirements, as well as courses taken to fulfill the Reading and Composition requirements, that are completed at UC Berkeley via concurrent enrollment during the fall 2020 and/or spring 2021 semesters may be taken on a P/NP basis. We will work with our clients on a case-by-case basis to determine the best path forward, and (for new scholars or employees) if your start date and documents should be adjusted. If you urgently need an updated I-20 for a visa interview appointment prior to Feb 15, 2021, please, You were originally issued a UC Berkeley transfer I-20 with a start date of Fall 2020. Embassies have confirmed that students with F-1 visas do not require an approved national interest exception to be allowed to travel to the U.S. Welcome international students! A termination or lay-off would be an ending of the employment, and would result in the beginning of days of OPT or STEM OPT unemployment. If Fall 2020 instruction is all remote OR if you are unable to enter the U.S. to begin your program for Fall 2020, BIO will be required to change your DS-2019 start date to January 2021, the start of Spring 2021. Open a case through Cal Student Central. Additionally, many other countries may have travel restrictions of their own, which could impact your ability to enter those countries or move freely. Please review BIO’s Spring 2021 new student enrollment guidance before taking steps to apply for an F-1 or J-1 visa. for current travel policy announcements and restrictions. Because you have not yet entered the U.S., you are still a. student even though you have been enrolled since Fall 2020. Please keep in mind that we currently do not have guidance regarding whether we will be able to adjust your I-20 entry to a semester later than Spring 2021, or if you will be required to begin a new SEVIS record. We are thrilled by the ways in which our alumni and donors have heeded this call, too, and thank them for their generosity. Current Travel Bans for Students, Scholars & Non-Immigrant Employees. However, you enrolled remotely for Fall 2020 and remained abroad. Currents Students - check out our COVID-19 Resource Guide for Students. For questions or concerns related to any topic in this section, please contact, For more information about trip registration, please see the pages on, updated executive directives on August 6, 2020, UC Berkeley’s Protocol for Essential International Travel, U.S. State Department ‘Do Not Travel’ level 4 advisory, common travel-related questions specific to international students and scholars, Campus Guidelines for International Activities and Agreements. Over the last 4 years, the Trump administration has proposed and instituted policies that have negatively impacted international students, scholars, and employees. Please notify Berkeley International Office so that we are aware of your situation and can assist with connecting you to support. We urge you to also contact your home country’s local consulate or embassy in the U.S. for support and information regarding travel home. 120 Sproul Hall, Berkeley, CA 94720. If Donald Trump is re-elected, we can expect this pattern to continue. If you are presently in the U.S., your I-20 or DS-2019 is still valid, and the visa stamp in your passport is expired, there is no need for you to make a trip just to extend the visa. Berkeley International Office understands that the results of the presidential election will have broad impacts on the United States, current U.S. immigration policies, and the cultural and political climate that our international students, scholars and employees encounter. BIO considers Filing Fee to be a normal registration status, and this is not impacted by the current guidance. information carefully, follow any necessary instructions, and check with your airline carrier if you need to make flight adjustments. If you are still finishing your degree and have concerns about your post-completion employment, you could also consider continuing your academic degree program, if further enrollment is appropriate for you in your degree program at this time. We are currently accepting all requests. Counseling resources just for scholars and employees: Also be aware that BIO advisers are always ready and willing to be of assistance in any way we can. for information regarding unemployment, what can be considered “employment” during the OPT period — including unpaid internships or volunteer work. We will begin making appropriate I-20 adjustments at the start of Spring 2021 in January. Please contact BIO as soon as possible for advising, which might include planning to extend your program of study. BIO is aware that many flights to impacted regions have been canceled, and that travel may not be available at this time. You are free to enroll remotely. Students on OPT should be sure that the work continues to meet OPT requirements or STEM requirements for eligible employment. You can make payments online via ACH, credit card, and IFT for our international students. 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