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AUGUST 15, 2018
TO ALL NEW STUDENTS: Welcome to Rutgers! We look forward to meeting you during the 2018 International Student Orientation program beginning at 9:00 a.m. on Monday, August 27, 2018, at the Rutgers College Avenue Gym. To get to the College Avenue Gym on Monday, August 27, 2018, take the A/EE/F/H/LX bus to the College Avenue Student Office and walk next door to the gym—you'll see many of your fellow students outside, so you can't miss it!
Please be advised of the following resources to help you get started:
Schedule for the International Student Orientation week
- Undergraduate Student Orientation Schedule
- Graduate Student Orientation Schedule
- RBHS Student Orientation Schedule
If you are arriving before August 27, we have also prepared a week of events for you to help you settle in before the official International Student Orientation week: Pre-Orientation Program (8/19-8/26) Schedule
VENDOR FAIR - meet with various banks, cell phone companies, local businesses, etc.
Sunday, August 26, 5-6:30PM, College Ave Student Office, Main Lounge
Repeated on Tuesday, August 28, 5:00-6:30PM, Livingston Student Office
Our POST ARRIVAL GUIDE will help you take care of all essential steps before the start of classes. Here is a quick check-list for your reference:
- Complete Check-In through the RGlobal Student Services Portal
- Attend the International Student Orientation
- Attend a Staying in Legal Status Workshop. If you have already attended this session through the Enrollment Pathway, you need not attend it again. However, if you have an on-campus job, you will need to attend an in-person session for employment related forms and paperwork
- Update Personal Information (emergency contact, address, phone number, and email) in the myRutgers portal
- Register for courses (minimum 12 credits for undergraduates) to activate and maintain your legal status
- Submit a photo online for the RUconnection ID card and pick up your ID card after your arrival
- Enroll for Health Insurance or apply for a waiver. Find out more at: https://global.rutgers.edu/international-scholars-students/health-insurance
Feel free to stop by the Rutgers Global – International Student and Scholar Services located at 180 College Avenue and have some of your most urgent concerns addressed by our staff.
TO ALL CONTINUING STUDENTS: The ISSS staff has a special request for you. During the week of Aug 27 to August 31, our office will be busy welcoming and assisting 1,500 new international students to Rutgers. If it is possible for you to save any business you need to do with us until AFTER orientation, we would appreciate it very much. We hope to be able to give most of our attention to new students all week and will resume our regular operations from Tuesday, September 4.
We will do our best to reply to emails within 48 hours, but please be patient while waiting for a response. In order to accommodate our new students, international student advisers will not have walk-in hours during this time. If you have an emergency, we will always be ready to help! In case you do need urgent assistance, the easiest way to reach us will be to email the ISSS at email@example.com and mark “URGENT” in the subject line. Someone from our office will respond to you as soon as possible. Please also note that all university units will be closed on Monday, September 3, 2018, in observance of Labor Day.
CHANGES IN STUDENT SERVICES – NEW WALK-IN HOURS, ELECTRONIC SUBMISSION OF FORMS AND STAFF CHANGES
We have made several changes to our advising services in an effort to provide you with more efficient and effective assistance on immigration, personal, social, and cultural matters. We have an expert staff available to answer any questions, and/or to connect you with appropriate resources around the community. Some of the highlights of the changes this year include:
- New Walk-In Hours for Advising and Travel Signatures: Walk-in hours will be from 10:00am to 4pm on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday. We are closed on Wednesday. Find out more details about walk-in hours and our other advising services here.
Some student groups have specific advisers and their walk-in hours remain the same as before.
- Electronic Submission of ALL Applications to ISSS via the RGlobal Portal: The RGlobal Student Services online portal enables international students to complete the essential steps to maintain their legal status, request work authorizations, signatures, and more. All ISSS student services forms can be completed or uploaded through the RGlobal portal. You are strongly encouraged to start using the portal to submit all forms immediately, however, in case you have submitted or are in the process of submitting a paper/email form/application to our office, we will continue to accept them until Friday, August 31. From September 4, we will only accept forms through the portal. Please follow detailed instructions on our website for the new process to submit requests and applications to ISSS.
- Staff Changes: We are sad to announce that Martha Baillargeon (international student adviser) will be leaving Rutgers to pursue a new opportunity. Martha has been an excellent student adviser and will be greatly missed. We wish her the very best!
Two of our very capable international student coordinators – Erica Sewell and Melaina Fraboni have been promoted to international student adviser positions and have already been advising students in this role for a few months now. We are also pleased to announce the joining of Audrey Nguyen and Jacqueline Huang as our international student coordinators.
IMPORTANT DEADLINES AND REMINDERS
STUDENTS WITH A TA/GA APPOINTMENT
Students with full TA/GA appointments who are enrolled in benefits through University Human Resources no longer need to contact our office to request a waiver of the student health insurance premium. You need to submit your enrollment paperwork only through Human Resources and do not need to submit waiver documentation to our office. Once Human Resources processes your insurance enrollment paperwork we will receive your coverage information and we will process your waiver.
ALL OTHER F-1 AND J-1 STUDENTS MUST EITHER ENROLL OR WAIVE:
STEPS TO COMPLETE HEALTH INSURANCE ENROLLMENT - DEADLINE IS FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 14, 2018:
- Register for classes. Wait three business days after registering for classes to complete the enrollment form at universityhealthplans.com
- Change your International address to a U.S. mailing address; visit my.rutgers.edu/portal. You may do this once you are registered for classes. You do not need to wait.
- Add your email address; visit my.rutgers.edu/portal. You may do this once you are registered. You do not need to wait
- Three days after registering for classes, go to universityhealthplans.com to complete the enrollment form. You will receive a confirmation number on the screen and to your Rutgers email, once you have successfully submitted the enrollment form
- Wait four days after receiving your enrollment confirmation number, go to University Health Plans, Inc. On the left navigation bar, select “Log into my account." You may then create an account, log in, and print your card
STEPS TO WAIVE THE STUDENT HEALTH INSURANCE FOR STUDENTS IN F-1 or J-1 VISA STATUS - DEADLINE IS FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 14, 2018
F-1 and J-1 students on a Rutgers sponsorship who have insurance coverage other than the student insurance plan that is charged on their term bills need to request a waiver of that insurance premium by following the following exemption request process outlined below. Please note that students cannot waive the student insurance plan through the United Healthcare website; it must be done through the Rutgers Global – International Student and Scholar Services. The deadline for submitting the waiver is Friday, September 14th, 2018.
Please complete the following steps to request the waiver:
- Review supporting documents you will need to provide or address in order to complete the exemption, all supporting documents must confirm that your coverage meets every one of the University’s health insurance requirements. Please note that the list of coverage requirements has been revised for the 2018-2019 academic year, please be sure that your policy meets each of those current requirements before submitting your request.
- Apply for the insurance exemption by completing the form available through our new RGlobal Student Services Portal on the ISSS website.
- Submit the form and any supporting documents to the ISSS by Friday, September 14, 2018, to opt out of the university’s student insurance plan and have the premium removed from the term.
**Important Note for Students on Another Visa Sponsorship who are registered for a full time course load and hold coverage other than the student insurance plan will need to waive their student insurance premium by following the online waiver instructions.
The Reduced Credit/Course Load Form is now online and can be accessed through the RGlobal student services portal.
To maintain legal status, all F-1 and J-1 students must “pursue a full course of study" at all times. This means being registered for a full credit load (12 credits for undergraduates and 9 credits for graduate students). There are cases, however, in which regulations consider a student to be pursuing a full course of study even though he or she NOT actually registered for a full credit load. For example, undergraduates who only need 1 or 2 classes to complete their program, or graduate students who have completed all coursework but are still conducting thesis or dissertation research might be considered to be pursuing a full course of study even though not registered for 9 credits.
IF YOU WILL BE REGISTERED FOR LESS THAN A FULL-TIME CREDIT LOAD IN FALL 2018, you MUST submit a "Reduced Credit/Course Load" form to our office. You need approval from our office for less than full-time enrollment in any semester. The form can be completed using the RGlobal Student Services Portal. The deadline for submitting the form is Friday, September 28, 2018.
Bear in mind that it takes a few days to process the form after receipt and we cannot guarantee timely processing of forms received after the deadline. This could mean loss of legal status and you will need to leave the country or apply for a re-instatement process with the government.
REMEMBER…the “Reduced Credit/Course Load” form can be submitted at any time before the deadline, even before the semester starts.
The International Friendship Program (IFP) has a great line-up of programs and events planned for you this semester. Sign up for IFP at http://go.rutgers.edu/p7jzd9ul
IFP Fall Welcome(Back) Party and Speed Friending Event
Thursday, September 13, 2018 | 5:00 PM - 8:00 PM | Busch Student Office Multipurpose Room
Follow us on Facebook. Come to our Fall Welcome (Back) Party and Speed Friending Event hosted by IFP, Rutgers Global – Study Abroad, and International Students Association (ISA). This will be a great opportunity for both IFP members and study abroad students to get involved through a fast-paced speed friending activity. We encourage your participation to represent IFP and to introduce our program to the new members. It would be a fun way to share cultural experiences and meet people from around the world! Please RSVP on our Facebook events page.
Conversation Partners Program “Match” Party
Friday, October 5th 2018 | 5:00 - 6:30 pm | College Avenue Student Office, Red Lion Cafe
Want to practice a foreign language? Ready to become more engaged with RU international community and make new friends?
Sign up to be “matched” with a conversation partner at: http://go.rutgers.edu/u760ogdu
January 10, 2017
U.S. ISSUES NEW "DO NOT TRAVEL" ADVISORY FOR FIVE STATES IN MEXICO
The U.S. State Department's latest travel advisory for Mexico, dated Jan. 10, 2018, names five Mexican states as "do not travel" destinations, the strictest advisory level in the new system the department unveiled yesterday.
Overall, the travel advisory gives the country of Mexico a Level 2 warning, meaning "exericse increased caution" due to crime—essentially the same as previous reports. But the states that received the highest warning in the four-level system, advising against travel entirely due to increased crime, were the Pacific coastal states of Colima, Guerrero, Michoacán and Sinaloa, as well as the Gulf Coast border state of Tamaulipas. Each of those states has been battered by violent incidents related to cartels and organized crime.
Eleven of Mexico's 31 states were given a Level 3 warning, meaning "reconsider travel." Those were the states of Chihuahua, Coahuila, Durango, Mexico, Jalisco, Morelos, Nayarit, Nuevo Leon, San Luis Potosí, Sonora and Zacatecas.
Planners and potential travelers should take into consideration, however, that the simplified, state-based labeling system introduced by the State Department obscures a number of geographical exceptions. For instance, citizens who read the detailed state-by-state breakdown below the highest-level warnings will note that in the State of Colima - which received a "do not travel to" advisory - U.S. government employees face no restrictions in traveling on major thoroughfares to the resort of Manzanillo in that state. U.S. government employees are typically subject to the most stringent of travel restrictions, so the fact they are permitted to travel there is significant.
The advisory offers similar exceptions in many of the states that were scored as Level 3 or 4. It notes, for instance, that there are no restrictions on government-employee travel to Guadalajara, Puerto Vallarta, Chapala and Ajijic in Jalisco, or to Riviera Nayarit, Santa Maria del Oro or Xalisco in the state of Nayarit.
"The U.S. Department of State advises to 'reconsider travel' to select Mexican states, but then exempts the tourist destinations within those states," reads a statement from the Mexico Tourism Board. "This exception to tourism destinations highlights the fact that the vast majority of crimes in Mexico do not occur in areas frequented by international tourists. And even in the rare cases of crime within tourist areas, incidents involving international tourists are incredibly rare."
Resort destinations such as Cancún and the Riviera Maya in Quintana Roo, and Los Cabos in Baja California Sur, face no additional restrictions beyond the advice to exercise increased caution. The same is true of Mexico City. Overall, 16 states face no additional, specific restrictions.
For more information, please visit the U.S. Department of State website.
December 5, 2017
SUPREME COURT LIFTS PARTIAL HOLD ON PRESIDENTIAL EXECUTIVE ORDER DATED SEPTEMBER 24
On December 4, 2017, the Supreme Court lifted the partial hold on the latest version of the Travel Ban 3.0 announced by the White House on September 24, 2017. The ban can now be fully enforced while legal challenges against it are making its way through the courts. The ban was issued by President Trump through a proclamation pursuant to Section 2(e) of Executive Order 13780 designating eight countries to be subject to partial or full restrictions on entry into the United States. The restrictions are country-specific and tailored to the situation of each individual country.
The eight countries subject to the proclamation are:
- North Korea
For more information refer to the Travel Advisory and Resources pages on the NAFSA website.
International students from the affected countries considering international travel or international students planning to travel to the countries listed in the ban are advised to contact the Rutgers Global–International Student and Scholar Services office to discuss their plans. International students in general are advised to exercise caution in international travel. Please follow our general recommendations for travel and do not hesitate to contact us with any questions or concerns or come in and meet with an adviser during walk-in hours.
Finally, Rutgers Law School has launched a new service, the Rutgers Immigrant Community Assistance Project (RICAP), which offers Rutgers University students at the Camden, New Brunswick, and Newark campuses access to legal information and guidance on immigration issues.