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Yes, the office is open Monday - Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 pm.
Walk-ins are held on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.
To access virtual walk-ins, log into International Student and Scholar Services' calendar in Canvas.
Students can schedule an appointment by logging into tuportal.temple.edu and clicking on the appointment system.
If you do not have access to the TUPortal appointment system, please go to this link https://outlook.office365.com/owa/calendar/TempleUniversity6@tuprd.onmicrosoft.com/bookings/
You can request a new form which we will sign for re-entry. Complete the request for a new I-20 at: https://noncredit.temple.edu/portal/applications/applicationProfile.do?method=loadApplicationIndex&applicationProfileId=15359531&parentSite=ISSS. A new I-20 will be e-mailed to you.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, International Student Advisors across the United States have been given authorization to electronically send I-20s. You will be able to use the I-20 for re-entry. Do not discard any previously issued I-20s. We are still required to physically mail forms DS-2019 for J-1 students.
If you left the U.S. and plan to return to the U.S., please be prepared to present the following documents when you pass through U.S. Immigration and U.S. Customs:
As of January 26, 2021 Covid-19 Testing Required for U.S. Entry (state.gov).
You should bookmark and print the SEVP Broadcast message published on August 7, 2020, which “enables schools and students to engage in distance learning in excess of regulatory limits due to the public health emergency generated by COVID-19.”
Keep your financial documentation (such as assistantship letters, scholarship letters, bank statements) available in your carry-on luggage. Financial documentation has always been required for entry to the U.S. but has rarely been asked for. However, a student who recently entered the U.S. was asked to present financial documentation.
As always, the following will be required:
Your valid passport.
Your valid F-1 or J-1 entry visa, and
Form DS-2019 or Form I-20, with a travel signature dated within the past year if you are a current student, six months if you are on an authorized period of optional practical training/academic training. If you do not have recent signature, please navigate to our application system and request a travel signature.
We also recommend that you familiarize yourself with your rights at the airport.
Please see Travel | Temple University International Student and Scholar Services for additional details.
Students who continue to make normal progress in their course of study remain eligible for admission into the United States. However, because of the changing array of travel restrictions, nonimmigrant students should refer to their local embassy’s website through the U.S. Department of State for any updates about visa issuance. Also, DHS and CDC websites both provide information about current travel restrictions to the United States.
No, Customs and Border Patrol has confirmed, many times, that a valid, unexpired F-1 or J-1 entry visa, along with other supporting documentation, will allow them to admit you in the U.S. in F-1 or J-1 status.
Your visa must be valid when you seek to enter the U.S. in F-1 or J-1 status. You will need to have your visa renewed before re-entering the U.S. The only way to renew your visa is by scheduling an appointment at a U.S. embassy outside the U.S. (preferably in your home country).
We cannot predict how the coronavirus situation will affect the U.S. Embassy processes in other countries.
Most U.S. embassies are beginning to open. Please continue to review information at your embassy. You can find information for the U.S. embassy that has jurisdiction over you place of residence at https://www.usembassy.gov/
Your visa does not need to be valid while you remain in the U.S. and continue taking classes (and otherwise maintaining your status). The visa needs to be valid for entry purposes only (if you leave the U.S. and are returning). Your I-20 or DS-2019 and passport must remain valid while you are in the U.S.
The travel signature on your I-20 or DS-2019 is valid for one year if you're a matriculating student, six (6) months if you're on OPT (F-1) or academic training (J-1).
Yes, students transferring to Temple University who are currently in the US and will maintain the same SEVIS ID will be able to maintain F-1 status by taking full-time courses in the spring semester at Temple University. The courses can be all online.
If you are currently outside the U.S. and do not plan to return to the U.S. for the spring 2021 semester, please let us know by sending an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org, we will need to defer your program start date to a future semester.
No, per federal requirements, only students who are Title IV eligible based on their 2019-2020 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)—meaning those who are eligible for federal student financial aid—may receive these grants. International Students in F-1 and J-1 status are not eligible for federally funded financial aid.
More information is available at https://news.temple.edu/announcements/2020-05-06/federal-cares-act-grants-available-students.
An individual who is a qualifying resident alien with a valid SSN is eligible for the payment only if he or she is a qualifying resident alien in 2020 and could not be claimed as a dependent of another taxpayer for 2020.
Nonimmigrant residents who received payments but are not qualifying resident aliens for 2020 should return the payments to the IRS by following the instructions about repayments.
Nonimmigrant Temple University employees can log into their Glacier accounts for assistance in determining whether or not they are resident aliens for tax purposes. All others should consult with their human resource or tax preparation professionals about this.
In addition, ISSS strongly recommends that any student and scholar who received CARES Act payment not spend the funds until s/he has determined that s/he is eligible to receive the payment. Ineligible individuals who received payment must be prepared to return the payment when a system to do so has been put in place.
Again, you should get your information about any matters such as this only from reputable sources. In this case, the U.S. Internal Revenue Service is the most reputable source of information: https://www.irs.gov/coronavirus-tax-relief-and-economic-impact-payments and https://www.irs.gov/coronavirus/economic-impact-payments.
If you are a nonimmigrant Temple University employee or student and you have any questions about this, you may contact human resources at email@example.com
Any questions about your lease with a property not owned and operated by Temple University must be brought to the attention of the property managers.
If you have particular concerns about the property, you may be able to address them with the Office of Off-Campus Housing Services (215-204-7944; https://offcampus.temple.edu/).
Students who decide to return to their home country and who want to cancel their insurance policy can do so by sending an email directly confirming that they want to cancel their insurance to Marketa Abney, HR Specialist at firstname.lastname@example.org by the 1st day of the month.
Students who will study from their home country during the Fall 2021 semester are not expected to obtain coverage until they re-enter the U.S. in F-1 or J-1 status.
ISSS has not received guidance from USCIS. As of now, students are required to be in the U.S. in F-1 status in order to apply for OPT. We will keep you updated of any changes, but at the current time, we will continue to process OPT applications as normal.
Students currently participating in OPT, including STEM OPT, may work remotely if their employer has an office outside of the United States or the employer can assess student engagement using electronic means. Students participating in STEM OPT do not need to submit an updated Form I-983 to report remote work.
However, requirements to submit an updated Form I-983 for other changes remain in effect. See 8 CFR 214.2(f)(10)(ii)(C)(9)(ii) for additional information.
To report these changes to SEVIS, submit the following reporting form to our office: https://noncredit.temple.edu/portal/applications/applicationProfile.do?method=loadApplicationIndex&applicationProfileId=18365427&parentSite=ISSS
In section 2 of the form under “Select Reporting Type”, choose “Material changes to the Form I-983 training plan”.
We have not received any guidance from USCIS that OPT will be extended due to COVID-19. You must stop working by the end of your OPT authorization. You have a 60-day grace period to remain in the U.S. after the OPT authorization ends. You should try to depart the U.S. by the end of the 60-day grace period or as soon as possible if you can. If this is not possible due to COVID-19 travel restrictions, please send an email to our office to let us know and we will make a note in your SEVIS record to explain the situation.
We have not had any updates regarding extension of the 90 days of unemployment rule. Some students’ SEVIS record has been automatically terminated due to lack of employment information on their SEVIS record.
No, it will not.
For the duration of the COVID-19 emergency, SEVP considers students who are working in their OPT opportunities fewer than 20 hours a week as engaged in OPT.
New nonimmigrant students in initial status after March 9, 2020 will not be able to enter the United States to enroll in a U.S. school as a nonimmigrant student for the fall 2021 term to pursue a full course of study that is 100 percent online. You must have at least one in-person requirement in order to enter the U.S. to begin your studies.
Many U.S. Embassies are beginning to open. Please see https://www.usembassy.gov/. Once your appointment is scheduled, you can request an expedited appointment. Contact the U.S. Embassy or consulate where you plan to apply for instructions on requesting an expedited appointment.
As of the writing of this message, the Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) guidance for studies during the COVID-19 pandemic remains the same. Per that guidance, nonimmigrant students in New or Initial status are not permitted to enter the United States to enroll in a U.S. school to pursue a full course of study that is 100% online. That is, students entering the U.S. for the first time to attend Fall 2021 classes must be enrolled in at least one (1) in-person or hybrid class. ISSS will provide updates on this guidance as we receive them.
Each embassy has its own procedure for requesting an expedited visa appointment. You must submit the request following the directions listed on the site of the embassy where you will apply. If information is requested of you that Temple University can provide, please reach out to ISSS, and we will be happy to assist in providing such information.
You should continue with the SEVIS transfer instructions available at http://www.temple.edu/isss/future-students/sevis.html
We have received confirmation from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) that due to the COVID pandemic, we may send Form I-20s to students electronically. Students may use the electronically-generated documents to apply for student visas and to enter the U.S., when entry is permissible.
Per guidance from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Forms I-20s are permitted to be sent electronically to the students. It is important that students retain this digital copy but also print a hard copy for their records, F-1 visa interview, and entry into the U.S.
You should check visa application requirements at the embassy where you will apply, but generally you will need:
Your I-20 or DS-2019 from Temple University.
A copy of your spring 2021 roster confirming that your classes are not all online or virtual. You can get a copy logging into TuPortal and printing out your roster.
The SEVP Broadcast message published July 24, 2020 confirming that initial students should be permitted to enter as long as they will pursue full course of study and that the course of study is not 100 percent online
When you are entering the U.S., you should be prepared to show the above documents as well as:
Your valid passport
Your valid F-1 or J-1 entry visa
No, your visa will remain valid until it expires. If you are required to defer your admission, you can still use your valid visa.
No, Forms I-20 issued electronically or with electronic signatures, as permitted during the COVID-19 emergency, will remain valid until students have a need for an updated Form I-20.
Yes, per the CDC "If you plan to travel internationally, you will need to get tested no more than 3 days before you travel by air into the United States (US) and show your negative result to the airline before you board your flight, or be prepared to show documentation of recovery (proof of a recent positive viral test and a letter from your healthcare provider or a public health official stating that you were cleared to travel)."
Additional information is available at Requirement for Proof of Negative COVID-19 Test or Recovery from COVID-19 for All Air Passengers Arriving in the United States | CDC
No, the requirement for out of state travellers to quarantine has been dropped. Additional information on Pensylvania mandated COVID information is available at https://www.governor.pa.gov/newsroom/gov-wolf-revises-mitigation-order-on-gatherings-and-lifts-out-of-state-travel-restrictions/
Students are encouraged to check their Temple emails regularly for additional information about move-in, quarantine/isolation procedures, and the COVID-19 testing plan described in the most recent message from President Englert and Provost Epps.
Learn more about Temple University's COVID-19 testing
Learn more about Temple University's testing and contact-tracing
Learn more about Temple University and the COVID-19 vaccine
If you have received a vaccine that is approved for emergency usage by the WHO, then you are considered to be fully vaccinated by Temple University. Once fully vaccinated, you are exempted from the University's testing policy for Fall 2021. Visit the patient health portal to upload your vaccination record. Detailed instructions on how to upload are available here.
If you have received a vaccine that is not approved for emergency usage by the WHO, then you are not considered to be fully vaccinated by Temple University. You must abide by Temple's testing policy (twice weekly testing starting August 23rd, 2021) until you are fully vaccinated. If you would like to become fully vaccinated, you must wait at least 28 days following your last shot before you begin the new series in the U.S.
The 9 vaccines that are currently approved (August 1, 2021) for emergency usage and recognized by Temple are:
If you have questions regarding this list, please reach out to StudentHealth@temple.edu for clarification.
Please be in touch with StudentHealth@temple.edu to discuss timing and availability for your second shot. Whether you can get the second shot immediately upon arrival will depend on how much time will pass between the two shots. At this time (August 1, 2021), Student Health Services is only utilizing the Pfizer vaccine.
Students who have received one dose of any other vaccine that requires two doses (aside from Pfizer and Moderna) are encouraged to wait at least 28 days before receiving the first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine in the U.S. You will need to receive both doses of the COVID-19 vaccine after arrival in order to be considered fully vaccinated; you cannot mix brands.
For example, if you received one shot of AstraZeneca on July 31st, 2021, you are advised to wait until August 28th to begin your first dose of Pfizer. If you receive your first shot of Pfizer on August 28th, your second shot will be scheduled for 3 weeks later, on September 18th. You would be considered fully vaccinated on September 18th after receiving your second Pfizer dose.
At this time, those who are considered to be fully vaccinated are not eligible to receive another vaccine. For example, if you received the Sinopharm vaccine in China but are interested in getting Pfizer after arrival in the US, this is not recommended and will not be allowed by Student Health. At this time (August 1, 2021), the CDC has not released guidance regarding booster doses or second vaccine doses for fully vaccinated individuals.
Visit the patient health portal to upload your vaccination record. Detailed instructions on how to upload are available here. Please submit English language translations along with your card if needed. If you have questions about whether your card is legible, please contact StudentHealth@temple.edu. If you are having any trouble uploading your documents, you may email them directly to StudentHealth@temple.edu.
You can sign up for a COVID-19 test on the patient health portal. Here are details on the University's testing plan with information on testing.
The Office of International Affairs has arranged for a special COVID-19 vaccination clinic on Wednesday, August 18th from 9am-11:30am and Thursday, August 19th from 9am-11:30am in the basement of Paley Hall, room G2. Here is the sign-up form to use to reserve a spot. Please read the paragraph under the "information" button on the form for details.
If you would like to receive a vaccine prior to these dates, please email StudentHealth@temple.edu or search available vaccine appointments on your TU Student Health Portal. You can also visit https://www.vaccines.gov/ for additional options. We encourage students to become fully vaccinated as soon as possible after their arrival in the US.
If you will arrive later than these dates, please note that the University will have multiple other opportunities for students to get vaccinated. Please be patient and wait for additional details from Student Health Services as we prepare for the start of the semester.