From: International Student Services
Date: June 2, 2021
Subject: ISS News, June 2, 2021: Congratulations Graduates, CWRU COVID-19 Website, Important Information for New Graduates, University Closed June 18, CWRU Take Two, Good Vibes, & More



IS

June 2, 2021

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in this issue:

  1. Congratulations Graduates!
  2. OPT & CPT Workshops
  3. OPT & STEM OPT Students- Follow These Simple Steps for Reporting Updates
  4. Graduating Students- Access to UH&CS and Insurance Information
  5. CWRU Take Two- ISS Closing Early on Fridays in June & July
  6. Features
  7. Campus Happenings
  8. Other Opportunities
  9. Good Vibes Only
  10. Important Tax Information
  11. Need a Fresh Travel Signature?
  12. How to Request a Cap-Gap I-20
  13. ISS Closed- Friday, June 18
  14. Update to Interim Policy
  15. We Hear Your Questions

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ISS Staff is available to students, without an appointment, on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday during advising hours:

11am to 3pm- through virtual advising available online

There are no advising hours on Wednesday.

____________________________________________________________________

If you need to speak with an advisor outside of our advising hours, please send an email to international@case.edu to schedule an appointment. Please provide your full, legal name and a brief description of the nature of your appointment when you contact us.

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Congratulations Graduates!

ISS would like to congratulate all of the May 2021 graduates!

We know that this has not been the year that you expected, but you persevered and should be extremely proud of all that you've accomplished. 

We are so proud of you and we wish you well as you start your next adventure!

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We Hear Your Questions

ISS has been receiving many emails over the past few weeks and the most popular topics on your minds right now are:

  • vaccine policy
  • quarantining
  • testing

We hear you!  We want to know more about these things too and to be able to give you better answers than “we are still waiting for information” or “we do not yet know.”  Truthfully, there is a lot that we just cannot answer definitively right now because of the fluidity of the situation and the challenge of planning for the future.  

The best resources we can share right now are:

Please continue to keep in touch with ISS throughout the spring and summer.  We will continue to do our best to answer your questions and support you.  As we learn more, as policies become finalized, and as plans become more concrete, ISS will continue to share information with you.  We will send messages directly to your @case.edu email accounts, we will include information in ISSNews, and we will update our website.

Thank you for your continued patience and understanding!

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ISS Closed- Friday, June 18

The University will be closed in observance of Juneteenth on Friday, June 18.

In the event of an emergency, please follow the protocol listed on our website.

Regular business hours will resume on Monday, June 21.

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CWRU Take Two- ISS Closing Early on Fridays in June & July

CWRU Take Two is back on Fridays in June and July so staff will be unavailable as of 3 p.m.. and appointment times will be adjusted to end earlier in the day as well. Please plan any Friday visits accordingly.

Regular Friday business hours will resume in August.

stormtrooper meme about getting a travel signature

Need a Fresh Travel Signature?

If you need a travel signature, don't panic! ISS can help. Read about what to do on our Travel and Reentry pages for F-1 and J-1 students.

You can also request a travel signature using our electronic form here.

OPT and CPT online workshops available

OPT & CPT Workshops

If you're still planning to apply for OPT or CPT, don't forget to complete the required workshop, which goes over in detail the application process, student responsibilities, and other important considerations.  Workshops are available online to complete at your convenience.  Advisor-led workshops will resume in the Fall.

For more information about OPT and CPT, visit our website. Please be sure to very carefully read all of the information there and to contact ISS if you have any additional questions with which staff can assist.

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OPT & STEM OPT Students- Follow These Simple Steps for Reporting Updates

Reporting related to your personal contact and employment information is a critical part of maintaining status while authorized for either OPT or STEM OPT. Here are instructions for you to follow to ensure that both ISS and the U.S. Government receive the information that they need. Follow these simple steps to ensure that your visa status is protected!

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How to Request a Cap-Gap I-20

If you've properly filed for a change of status to H-1B or been selected to receive an H-1B, you may be eligible for the cap-gap extension. To qualify for the H-1B cap-gap extension you must have:

  • timely filed your petition
  • requested an employment start date of October 1 of the current year
  • requested a change of status
  • not violated the terms or conditions of your current F-1 status

The cap-gap extension automatically extends a student's duration of status (time period during which an F-1 student is legally present) in the United States. If a student is on a period of valid post-completion OPT at the time the H-1B petition is filed, employment authorization is also extended. For students who complete their period of valid post-completion OPT and are on their 60 day grace period at the time the H-1B petition is timely filed, their duration of status will also be extended, but does not extend any kind of work authorization during that time.

ISS can help you obtain a cap-gap I-20 if you meet all of the above criteria. Below is some information about our policies for creating your cap-gap I-20.

Please be aware that ISS is not provided any advanced notification of an H-1B petition being selected. SEVIS only contains H-1B information once the USCIS system called CLAIMS properly updates it. CLAIMS also updates the SEVP Portal; students have access to the exact information that staff does.

ISS' ability to generate a cap-gap I-20 is completely dependent on the SEVIS record being properly updated by USCIS' CLAIMS. Cap-gap functionality in SEVIS is directly linked to information being properly transferred from CLAIMS and a student's SEVIS record indicating that the petition is either pending or approved. When the transfer of information and functionality are working properly, a cap-gap I-20 can be provided within about 5 business days. To initiate the request for your cap-gap I-20:

  • Log in to Terra Dotta via www.visas.case.edu
  • click on this link.
  • Complete the electronic form and upload all of the necessary materials. ISS must have these items on file in order to process your request.
  • Wait to hear from ISS. Please be very mindful of both your timing of this request and the timing that ISS requires (5-7 business days) to process the required paperwork for you. This is an extremely busy time in our office and we appreciate your patience!

In cases where a student has received either receipt information or an approval notice for the H-1B petition but CLAIMS has not properly updated the SEVIS record, an I-20 cannot be generated by ISS since the option to create the I-20 is actually not available in the computer system. A manual update to fix the data must be requested by ISS. These data fixes can take several weeks, even months, before they're resolved and before ISS will initiate one, the student must discuss the process with an advisor.

Once ISS is able to prepare a student's cap-gap I-20, an advisor will send an email when it's ready. If ISS is unable to prepare the cap-gap I-20 for any reason, an advisor will contact the student via email to discuss next steps.

healthy life road sign

Learn About How University Health and Counseling Services (UH&CS) Will Extend Service for Graduating Students

Important Tax Information

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New Graduates: Important Tax Info to Ensure You Get Your 2021 W-2

When CWRU generates your W-2 for the 2021 tax filing year, it will be sent to your Permanent Address as listed in SIS. Please take a moment to verify that your correct Permanent Address is listed in SIS (make any updates as needed by December 15) to ensure that you'll receive your W-2.

If your Permanent Address is current, but you would prefer to have your W-2 sent to another address, it is necessary for you to include that address under the W-2 Override option in SIS no later than December 15. Using the W-2 Override function will maintain the integrity of your Permanent Address information and ensure that you receive your W-2 at the different, preferred address.

Remember it is your responsibility to file taxes each year and that W-2 is a critical document for that process.

Please contact Payroll if you have questions about receiving your W-2.

tax form collage

Missed the Tax Filing Deadlines?

Are your friends getting refund checks from the IRS? The deadline to file your taxes was in May; however, the IRS does allow for some returns to be filed past the deadline. Filing now, even if you're late, will help you avoid interest and penalties and it is your only opportunity to claim a refund (if applicable).

All individuals in the U.S. who have income must file a U.S. tax return and all individuals in F, J, M, and Q immigration (including spouse and young children) are required to file a Form 8843 – Statement for Exempt Individuals as long as they are considered non-resident aliens for tax purposes.

Information about filing your taxes is always available on our website

Access to Sprintax is still available if you need assistance with filing your tax forms.

More information: https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/filing-past-due-tax-returns

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ISSNews Summer Schedule

After Commencement, ISS will continue to publish and send ISSNews to all international students, but not every Wednesday since activity slows significantly during the summer.  Please continue to check your CWRU email regularly and read through any ISSNews publications that we do send out. They will include information that is important to be aware of as student visa holders!

ISS will resume its weekly ISSNews publication in August as we all prepare for the Fall semester.

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Update to Interim Policy

ISS' interpretation and understanding of regulations related to unauthorized employment and other violations of status related to training has changed.  Very shortly, ISS will be removing the Interim Policy from our website and adding updated information that is completely in line with federal regulations.  All of this is being done in an effort to ensure that students remain well-informed and fully compliant with federal regulations.

Violations of this type are uncommon and ISS does not anticipated anything but a smooth transition for students moving forward.  If you have questions, please email international@case.edu so that we can help you.

Features

CLE Bucket List Flyer

Campus Happenings

www.michaelmage.com image

Makin' Magic with CWRU

The Case Western Reserve University Cleveland Alumni Chapter invites you to enjoy an interactive evening of magic and mysticism (and comedy!) with magician, Michael Mage!

Include the entire family and make sure you have a deck of cards handy — you never know if you'll be asked to participate in a trick.

Stay tuned after the show for a few behind-the-scenes tutorials from Michael Mage himself!

Thursday, June 17, 2021 
6:30 - 8pm EDT
$10

Other Opportunities

rethinking youth justice flyer

Rethinking Youth Justice

This 1 credit hour course is open to students across majors and does not have any prerequisites.

This class will discuss some of the most pressing issues that face the juvenile justice system, especially during the pandemic, such as racial/ethnic disproportionality in the juvenile justice system, substance abuse, mental disorders, and the school to prison pipeline. Through participating in various class activities (e.g., case studies, group discussions, videos, and mini-lectures), students will develop an insight into the role of social work in juvenile delinquency prevention and treatment. This course will also bring an international perspective with an overview of social work practice in different countries.

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UNIV 401: Advanced Professional Development for University Teaching


Registration for Advanced Professional Development for University Teaching (UNIV401) is open now for all graduate students and post-docs.
Anyone interested in a future as a faculty member or educator at the university level should consider this free course.

Taught by experienced teachers, this course offers participants the chance to learn more about the theory and practice of teaching and learning. The course will feature small group discussions about the theories of teaching and learning, opportunities to observe experienced university faculty, and practice through micro-teaching sessions.

Participants will receive a certificate of completion.

This course will take place on Tuesdays during the Fall, Spring, and Summer semesters.

Two sections are available.


Participants will be expected to read assignments, complete weekly journal assignments, develop a course outline and syllabus, plan and teach a mini-lesson, and participate fully in all discussions and online sessions.

This course is open to students, post-docs, and research scholars.

Enrollment is via the Student Information System.

If you have any additional questions, please email univ401@case.edu.

Good Vibes Only

During this very challenging time, ISS staff wants you to know that we are thinking about you- hoping you are safe, healthy, staying positive- and sending out good vibes!

In this section, we are including some things that we hope will make you laugh and smile, help you relax, be entertaining, give you something to do, etc.

This is a good vibes only section!

sandwich art

25 People Recreating Famous Paintings with Sandwiches