From: International Student Services
Date: March 2, 2022
Subject: ISS News, March 2, 2022: Change in Staff Availability on March 4, Travel During Spring Break, Nominate Students for ISAC, Study Abroad Photo Contest, Beware of Student Job Scams, Tax Information, Good Vibes, and More


March 2, 2022


in this issue:

  1. OPT & CPT Workshops
  2. Tax Information for 2021
  3. Features
  4. Campus Happenings
  5. Other Opportunities
  6. Good Vibes Only
  7. ISS is OPEN During Spring Break
  8. Traveling During Spring Break
  9. Friday, March 4- ISS Staff Only Available Until 3 p.m.
  10. Beware pf Student Job Scams


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

11am to 1pm- through virtual advising available online

1pm to 3pm- through in-person advising in the office

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 to schedule an appointment. Please provide your full, legal name and a brief description of the nature of your appointment when you contact us.

schedule change written on pink post it note

Friday, March 4, is National Employee Appreciation Day- ISS Staff Only Available Until 3 p.m.

CWRU will celebrate National Employee Appreciation Day in a variety of ways, including early dismissal for staff at 3 p.m..  Please plan any visits to ISS (and other university offices) keeping in mind that staff will only be available until 3 p.m. on Friday, March 4.

You can read more about CWRU's plans in the daily.

OPT and CPT workshop branding telling students that workshops are available online

OPT & CPT Workshops

ISS is offering Optional Practical Training (OPT) and CPT Workshops to go over in detail the application process, student responsibilities, and other important considerations.

Being well informed before applying for either authorization is extremely important and applying early is critical!

USCIS is publishing that it takes 3-5 months to process submitted OPT applications. Plan to complete a required OPT workshop as early as possible to be best prepared. Remember, you do not need to have a job offer to apply for OPT!

You do need to have a job offer before applying for CPT authorization and you are not eligible to begin your experience until you have proper authorization in place. It can take several days to become authorized.

Virtual workshops led by an advisor have been scheduled and information about required registration, attendance, and the application process can be found on our website under the OPT and CPT sections.

spring break sign

Traveling During Spring Break

**If you have concerns about how the pandemic could impact your travel plans, ISS strongly encourages all students to consider the risks that might come with traveling and to plan accordingly.  We understand that traveling may be necessary and just want you to be best prepared.**

If you plan to travel outside of the U.S. during the break, be sure to check the entry requirements for all of the places you will visit.  As a visitor, it is necessary to comply with all of the laws put in place by a host country’s government.

To enter the US from abroad, proof of vaccination and a negative COVID test are currently required.  As you get closer to your return date, be sure to check the CDC's website for the most current information related to entry requirements.  You should also familiarize yourself with university policies related to returning to campus after international travel.

In addition to vaccination and testing requirements, a valid travel signature on your I-20 (if you are in F-1 status) or your DS-2019 (if you are in J-1 status) is required to enter the United States.  Before leaving campus, ideally 2 weeks before you leave campus, check your I-20 or DS-2019 for a valid travel signature. 

A travel signature is valid for up to one year with just two exceptions: (1) If you will be traveling to Canada, you should have a travel signature that is no more than six months old. (2) If you have applied for or are currently approved for post-completion OPT as an F-1 student, a travel signature is valid for only six months.

To request a travel signature, log into Terra Dotta (, submit the electronic Travel Signature Request, and follow the instructions to receive your signature.

For more information related to travel and your F-1 visa status, visit this website.

For more information related to travel and your visa J-1 visa status, visit this website.

Spring break written in the sand next to sunglasses

Spring Break- ISS is OPEN

While we hope you'll be resting and relaxing over Spring Break (March 7-11), please know that ISS will be open and available during regular advising hours if you need us.

scam spelled out on keyboard

Beware of Student Job Scams

Scammers are actively emailing students with a fake job opportunity to swindle students out of money. Please take a moment to read the daily article about this so that you are prepared.

For more information about other types of scams and how to protect yourself, visit our website.

Tax Information for 2021 Filing Year

Tax Deadline in April: Forms & Sprintax Availablity

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, which you are legally required to file to the Internal Revenue Service.  ISS has arranged free access to Sprintax for your federal tax filing needs.

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 1.
  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 by now, you haven't received your W-2 from CWRU, contact Payroll at If you were authorized to work for another employer, you should contact their payroll department.

For more information regarding the 1098-T, please visit Financial Services website to download the Nonresident Alien 1098-T Request Form.

1042-S forms will be prepared by mid-March and sent to students by Payroll. Please contact Payroll if you have questions about the issuance of your 1042-S.

For more information, visit our Information on Filing Taxes page and if you have any questions, the Sprintax team will be happy to help via their 24/7 live chat function or email ISS staff members cannot advise you on your questions, which is why we partner with the experts at Sprintax.

Sprintax logo

Sprintax Offers Tax Webinars to Prepare for Tax Filing Season 2021

ISS partners with the tax experts at Sprintax who offer tax filing services to international students that are considered non-resident aliens for tax purposes. The Sprintax team will be hosting a series of free open tax webinars to provide helpful information around non-resident tax filing obligations.

You can find the details and registration links below for each:  The informational webinars will cover the same topics on each occasion:
  • An overview of tax for nonresident students and scholars
  • Who must file a 2021 US tax return
  • What income forms students may receive
  • Forms that need to be completed and sent to the IRS
  • Terms like FICA, ITIN, and Form 1098-T
  • What happens if students don’t file or misfile
  • State tax returns
  • Sprintax overview
Sprintax also released a new blog, How to Prepare for the 2021 US Tax season, which you are welcome to view.
sprintax's flyer about photo contest.

Back by popular demand…

Sprintax is offering users the chance to win a $500 Amazon Gift Card along with some cool Sprintax merch.

For your chance to win this amazing prize, all you have to do is show Sprintax a photo of where in the world you’re filing your US taxes from.

Visit Sprintax's Instagram page for full details


isac office hours flyer
photo contest flyer
ISAC photo collage
Cleveland Bucket List Flyer

Campus Happenings

book with feather quill

Nominations Due March 2 for the 2022 Wittke and Jackson Awards

Nominations are being accepted for the J. Bruce Jackson Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Mentoring and the Carl F. Wittke Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching.

The Jackson Award celebrates faculty and staff who have developed sustained mentoring relationships with students. These individuals have guided a student in their academic and career paths; fostered the student's long-term personal development; challenged the student to reflect, explore and grow as an individual; and supported and/or facilitated the student's goals and life choices.

The Wittke award is given to outstanding classroom teachers who have demonstrated excellence in undergraduate teaching and who are engaging, invested and stimulate enthusiasm for their area of study.

To nominate a faculty or staff member for one of the awards, please complete the following nomination form. Nominations are due March 1, 2022.

For more information, contact The Office of Undergraduate Studies at


Game Night at KSL

Thursday, March 3
7:00pm - 9:00pm
Kelvin Smith Library, Freedman Center, 1st Floor, 11055 Euclid Ave , Cleveland, OH 44106, United States
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Put away laptops and phones and play old fashioned board games with friends. Refreshments will be provided to keep you fueled and competitive through the night.

A full list of games offered by KSL can be found here:

student leadership award winners

Submit Nominations for the Student Leadership Awards

The Student Leadership Awards were created by Dr. Dorothy Pijan in 1986 to recognize and honor Case's outstanding undergraduate student leaders. Dr. Pijan had worked at Case as the director of Thwing Center and Student Activities from 1982-2003. Dr. Pijan was a well-respected and nationally known student union professional. She had an incredible passion, drive and dedication to student leadership. After her death in 2003, the awards were named in her honor to recognize her many contributions to student life at Case Western Reserve University.

The Office of Student Activities & Leadership is officially accepting nominations for the annual Student Leadership Awards! The nomination deadline is March 4.

Students, faculty and staff are encouraged to complete the nomination form recognizing outstanding students, programs, organizations and advisors. To nominate, you select an award, name a person, program or organization that should be considered for the selected award and write a short paragraph stating why the nominee is deserving of the award and answer one or two questions supporting your stance. The entire nomination process should only take about 10 minutes!


Safeguarding Yourself: A workshop on Identity Protection

Friday, March 4
12:45pm - 1:45pm
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Your identity makes up who you are. It is comprised of your Personally Identifiable Information, or PII, which is data that could potentially be used to identify you. Safeguarding your PII is more important than evet. In this workshop, you’ll learn about the latest scams and how to help protect yourself from them, ways PII can be compromised, strategies to help keep your data safe, and, most importantly, what you can do if your identity is compromised.

3 dancers in vitalista marketing


The Department of Dance will present Vitalitas, the Master of Fine Arts thesis concert March 24-26 at 8:00 pm and March 27 at 2:30 pm at Mather Dance Center. The concert will feature solos, a duet, and an ensemble work by MFA thesis candidates Mary-Elizabeth Fenn, Stephen Markwei and Tingyu Xie.

To reserve tickets by phone, please call the Box Office: 216-368-5246. For questions, contact the HouseManagement Coordinator, N’dea Price at

Ticket Prices:
$15 General Admission
$12 Faculty/Staff
$10 Students with ID's

Online Ticket Reservations for Vitalitas:

Other Opportunities

new york times modern love image

Modern Love's College Essay Contest


Modern Love is a weekly New York Times column, a book, a podcast — and now, in its 17th year, a television show — about relationships, feelings, betrayals and revelations.  Modern Love’s college essay contest invites undergraduate students to talk about what love has been like during these unprecedented times. To learn more about the contest and its prizes, check out the website.  Submissions are due no later than March 27 at 11:59 p.m. Eastern time. 

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!

beatbox brilliance with Tom Thum

Beatbox Brilliance with Tom Thum