From: International Student Services
Date: April 1, 2020
Subject: ISS News, April 1, 2020: Virtual Holi Celebration, Grad Student Appreciation Week, Extended Tax Deadline, H-1B Information, Scam Alerts, BMV & SSA notifications, Entrepreneurship Speaker Series, & More!


April 1, 2020


in this issue:

  1. Featured Events
  2. Campus Events
  3. Tax Information for 2019- New Filing Deadline of July 15, 2020
  4. End of Semester Reminders
  5. OPT & CPT Workshops
  6. Beware of Scams
  7. Changes in OH BMV Services
  8. Social Security Office Close Due to COVID-19
  9. Census 2020
  10. H-1B Information


ISS Staff is available to students, without an appointment, on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday during virtual advising hours,11am to 3pm.

There are no virtual advising hours on Wednesday.

Appointments through Zoom or by phone can be requested by emailing Please provide your full-name and a brief description of the nature of your appointment when you contact us.
keep calm the semester is about to end meme

End of Semester Reminders

If you have thoughts about traveling abroad during the summer, be sure to ask yourself these important questions, visit the links if you need to take action, and take the effects of COVID-19 into consideration as you make your plans:

Do I need to extend your I-20 or DS-2019? If you do, read more under the Frequently Asked Questions Section.

Do I need to transfer your F-1 or J-1 SEVIS Record? If you do, read more under the Frequently Asked Questions Section.

Am I fully prepared to travel during the break so that I can return to campus smoothly?  In addition to having your I-20 or DS-2019 signed for travel, which you can read about here if you’re an F-1 or J-1 student, please:

  • check the validity of the visa in your passport. US Embassies and Consulates have suspended services worldwide and there could be significant delays in visa issuances.  This delay could significantly affect your ability to return to the United States.
  • be aware of travel restrictions.  Travel restrictions are changing as the situation with COVID-19 evolves.  Unless travel restrictions loosen or lift entirely, it could be very difficult to enter the United States.
  • make sure your passport is valid for at least 6 months into the future at all times.  Many government agencies are reducing and suspending services. Passport issuance could be an issue in your home country.  Please prepare as early as possible if you need to apply for a new passport.

Do you have more questions that you need help answering? Get in touch with ISS staff during advising hours or by email before you leave campus.

OH BMV logo

Many OH BMV Services will be Unavailable While Stay-at-Home Order is in Effect.

Effective March 19, the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV) closed many locations and discontinued many services.  Please visit the OH BMV's website for more information.

ssa logo

Social Security Offices Close Due to COVID-19

Visit Social Security Administration's dedicated website to learn about how services will be affected and how you can get help.
H1B Visa image

H-1B Initial Electronic Registration Selection Process Completed

For more information, visit the H-1B Electronic Registration Process page.

tax time clip art

Tax Deadline Extended to July 15, 2020
Sprintax Still Available to Help You File

If you haven’t filed your taxes for 2019 yet, it’s not too late.  ISS makes Sprintax available to help you.

Sprintax is a tax-return-preparation software program designed primarily for international students and other educational visa holders. It can help you prepare your U.S. federal income tax return and assist you in preparing Form 1040NR or 1040NR-EZ.

You may access Sprintax and begin preparing your tax return by following these steps:

  1. Register and follow the simple instructions
  2. Complete the online questionnaire
  3. Enter Case Western Reserve University’s unique code.  This code was sent to you via email on February 12.
  4. Sprintax will prepare your tax return

If Sprintax determines that you are required to file state taxes, you will have the opportunity to prepare those state taxes. You are not required to use Sprintax to file state taxes but, remember, it is your responsibility to comply with the law and properly file all taxes.

If you have any questions, the Sprintax team will be happy to help via their 24/7 live chat facility.

In response to the effects of COVID-19 and the cancellation of many onsite tax support services, Sprintax is also offering this 35 minute tax webinar, which explains the core tax obligations for international students. Please use the link to access the video:

For more information, visit our Information on Filing Taxes page.

census 2020 image

Cleveland Needs You! Fill Out the 2020 Census!

All students living off campus, please fill out the 2020 Census!  The Census is a count of all the people living in the USA, and it is carried out once every 10 years. The census provides critical data that lawmakers, business owners, teachers, and many others use to provide daily services, products, and support for you and your community. Every year, billions of dollars in federal funding go to hospitals, fire departments, schools, roads, and other resources based on census data.

When YOU fill out the census, you make sure Cleveland gets the resources we need to keep our city a great place to live for you and our CWRU family!

The census is EASY to fill out!  Visit to answer a few simple questions – it typically takes 15 minutes or fewer.

Want more information?  Watch this informative video!

If you live on campus, you do not need to fill out the census.  The university will do it for you!

OPT and CPT workshop branding telling students to check the schedule
scam spelled out on keyboard

Beware of Scams

During the spring, particularly around tax time, scams are common. 

ISS wants to make sure that international students are aware of these scams and know how to protect themselves.  Visit our website for more information.  

Featured Events

virtual holi celebration

Join a Virtual Holi Celebration & Win an Amazon Gift Card!

The Center for International Affairs invites you to a virtual celebration of Holi this week!

Holi, known as the festival of colors, celebrates the arrival of spring and thanksgiving for a good harvest.

Since the CWRU campus community is not able to celebrate Holi in person this year as planned, the Center for International Affairs encourages you to join its virtual celebration on Facebook this week. The virtual event will feature photos and video from past Holi festivals, opportunities to share favorite memories and a contest for students!

Students can send their photos from Holi celebrations either at CWRU or in their home or study abroad country for the Center for International Affairs to post on Facebook. The Center will add them to a special photo album and the photo with the most likes by the end of next week (Friday, April 10) will receive an Amazon gift card!

To participate, students should email their photo to and include their name along with where and when the photo was taken.

Members of the campus community can visit the Center for International Affairs’ Facebook page,, to vote for their favorite photo and encourage their friends to vote for it as well!


Enter the 2020 Study Abroad Photo Contest!

Monday, February 17 at 8:00am
to Wednesday, April 15 at 11:55pm, Center for Intl Affairs, Tomlinson 143 (7031) Case Western Reserve Univ 10900 Euclid Ave., Cleveland, Ohio 44106, United States
Add to Google Cal,Outlook,Yahoo,iCal

Do you have amazing photographs of your experience studying abroad with CWRU? Share them with us to help encourage other CWRU students to study abroad and win prizes!

Overall Winner: $75
The World is Your Classroom: $75
Cultural Experience: $50
Spartans Abroad: $50
Scenery: $50
Facebook’s Most Likes: $50

Check out the contest details & submit your photos here:


To take part in this contest you must be a CWRU student who studied abroad during:

Spring Semester 2019
Spring (May Abroad) 2019
May Term 2019
Summer, Summer I or Summer II 2019
Fall Semester and Academic Year 2019
Winter Break 2019-2020
Spring Break 2020
Spring Semester or Calendar Year 2020


Campus Events


Graduate Student Appreciation Week (GSAW)

Monday, April 6 at 8:00am
to Friday, April 10 at 11:00pm
Case Western Reserve University Campus, 10900 Euclid Ave, Cleveland, Ohio 44106, United States
Add to Google Cal,Outlook,Yahoo,iCal

Graduate Student Appreciation Week (GSAW)

group of people in a huddle around a table

CWRU Veale Institute for Entrepreneurship's Speaker Series

The Veale Institute for Entrepreneurship aims to be a catalyst at CWRU for venture creation and commercialization, entrepreneurial learning and programming, and communication. Check out their series being offered digitally through the end of the semester!