What happens if COVID hits again and campus closes – will international students be forced to leave Union again?
All residential students will be expected to leave campus if COVID-19 hits again and campus closes. Considerations will be made for international students and students who are housing insecure depending on the specific environment and circumstances.
Will there be insurance to cover international students who become ill with COVID?
The student health plan will cover any COVID-19 related costs. The Wicker Wellness Center does not bill insurance.
Can all upper class international students return to campus?
Upper class international students will have the same option to be on campus or remote as all other upper class students. Travel and visa issuances may restrict some students from re-entering the U.S. and returning to campus so a continuation with online courses may be the only option.
What if I am delayed in returning to campus due to visa issues? What options do I have?
Students who know of travel issues that will prevent them from arriving on time to begin classes for winter term should consider virtual options as an alternative. Please reach out to Kate Schurick, dean of first-year students, to discuss your options.
Upperclass students who are not able to renew their visa or book a flight to be on campus will have the option to take classes on-line.
Will there be online opportunities for international students that are respectful of different time zones?
Mode (synchronous and asynchronous) and timing of specific online classes will vary from class to class.
What is the plan for breaks – can international students remain all year?
Depending on the active COVID-19 situation, Union will plan to offer continuous housing options to those who are unable to leave the U.S. due to travel bans and/or are housing insecure.
Are online classes still going to be allowed under the F-1 visa? Can I continue on my F-1 visa status outside of the U.S. if I need to participate in remote study?
During the pandemic, students holding F-1 visas are able to take a full-course load of studies online either outside of the U.S. or in the U.S. while still maintaining active status.
Will international students be able to take all classes remotely or will remote class offerings be limited? How will Union address the time zone issue for international students taking classes remotely?
International students who are not able to enter the U.S. will be able to take classes remotely. Students will work with their professors to come up with a solution for an individual's time zone.
Will international students who cannot obtain a visa before the start of the term be permitted to complete the entire term remotely?
Are there visa requirements regarding online versus in-person classes?
First-year students who are entering the U.S. in winter term for the first time have to be enrolled in at least one in-person or hybrid course. The rest can be online. All other students, including first-year international students who were on campus during fall term, are able to take all their classes online while in the U.S.
First-year students who decide to remain in their home countries are able to take a full course load of online classes. Their I-20 will be deferred until they are able to physically be on campus.
Upperclass students are able to take a full-course load of online courses while in the U.S. or outside of the U.S. without it affecting their F-1 visa status.
Will my visa and I-20 be affected if I stay in my home country and take online classes?
First-year students will be able to take all of their courses online from their home country. Their I-20 will be deferred until they are able to travel to campus and they will receive an updated version with the new arrival date. This will not affect their visa if it has already been issued. If students need to apply for a visa they will need the updated I-20 to show the new arrival date.
Upperclass students are able to remain outside of the U.S. and take all of their courses online while keeping their SEVIS record and I-20 active. This will not affect their visa unless it expires while outside of the U.S. then they will need to renew their visa before re-entering the U.S.
Upperclass students can also enter the U.S. and take all of their courses online whether it be from on-campus or anywhere in the country. This will not affect the I-20, SEVIS record, or visa status as long as they are taking a full course load.