ISS news

Post  1.9.2017

Review the below important information on

  • ISS Spring 2017 Schedule
  • Travel During Winter Break
  • Reminders - Post completion options, Check end date of I-20/DS-2019
  • Spring semester Registration and Less Than Full Form
  • Curricular Practical Training requirements
  • USCIS Fee Increases
  • Filing for Graduation


ISS Spring 2017 Schedule


Starting January 9th ISS - Metro campus will have the following schedule.


Open Monday - Friday 9:00am - 5:00pm 

Closed Wednesday 9:00am - 12:00pm


Walk-In Advising Hours   Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays  2:00pm - 5:00pm

(Non Walk-In Time:  All other hours ISS is open Advisors are available by appointment)


International Student Welcome Week  January 16th - 20th

  • Closed - Monday January 16th for the Martin Luther King Holiday
  • Open - Tueseday January 17th 9:00am - 5:00pm (Special Walk-In Advising Hours 1:00pm - 5:00pm)
  • Closed - Wednesday January 18th and Thursday January 19th 9:00am - 5:00pm 
  • Open - Friday January 20th 9:00am - 5:00pm (Walk- In Advising hours 2:00pm - 5:00pm)

***Please note any requests for processing must be made by 1/9/17 in order to be processed before International Student Welcome Week.   Requests made after 1/9/17 may not be processed until 1/23/17 due to the International Student Orientation.

Florham Campus


ISS Hours - Monday, Tuesday Wednesday 10:00am - 5:00pm   Fridays by scheduled appointment


International Student Welcome Week  January 16th - 20th

  • Closed - Monday January 16th for the Martin Luther King Holiday
  • Closed - Tuesday January 17, Thursday January 19th, and Friday January 20th
  • Open - Wednesday January 18th  12:00pm - 5:00pm



Travel During Winter Break


If you plan to travel outside of the United States during the winter break, check your I-20 or DS-2019 to see if you have a valid travel signature on your most recent I-20 or DS-2019. A travel signature is valid for 12 months for a F-1 student (6 months for a student on OPT) and 6 months for a J-1 student.

If you are in need of a travel signature you can drop off your I-20 or DS-2019 in the office for the standard 3-5 business day processing. You should submit your I-20 or DS-2019 to ISS at least one week before traveling.
*****If you come into the office requesting a travel signature same day or if you are traveling the next day you may not be accommodated – Please be responsible and obtain a travel signature well in advance.   

A travel signature is a requirement for international travel only.  

You must also have the following if you are traveling outside the United States

  • Most recent SEVIS I-20 signed on page two of the new form I-20 or DS-2019 signed on page one by an International Student Advisor
  • Valid passport – valid for at least six months from date of return to US
  • Unexpired F-1 or J-1 visa in your passport – If you need to renew your visa we recommend you read the following ISS webpage
  • Students on OPT should also carry their EAD cards and proof of employment (letter of absence from your employer)
  • Registration for the Spring 2017 semester – To make the travel signature process smoother it is recommended you register for the Spring 2017 prior to making a travel signature request.

    ****Please be aware if you are visiting another country you must check with that country’s visa or consular office regarding the entry requirements. Many countries require a visitor’s visa for entry.





Please inform ISS of your post completion plans or take action with your record by doing one of the following


If you are completing your program at the end of the Fall semester or during the winter session, you must complete one of the following end of program options:


  • Depart the U.S. within the “grace period” after completing your program. 60 day grace period for F-1 student, 30 day grace period for J-1 students. Please send ISS an email informing us that you will choose this option.
  • Apply (or have already applied) for OPT or Academic training. (ISS recommends you apply for OPT at least 8 weeks prior to your program completion.) Please be aware that your program completion date may be prior to the expiration date on your I-20 or DS 2019. Your F-1 or J-1 status ends on the day you complete your final program requirements.  See OPT application and packet
      or J-1 students should see the ISS Director regarding academic training.
  • Transfer your SEVIS record to a new school. (This must be done prior to the end of the 60 day grace period after program completion. F-1 students only)
  • Enter a new academic program at FDU. (The new I-20 must be created within the 60 day grace period after program completion. F-1 students only)
  • Apply (or have already applied) for a Change of Status with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Please inform ISS by email if you will choose this option.



Check the end date of your I-20 or DS 2019


It is extremely important that you check your I-20 or DS 2019 completion date.  It is your responsibility to do a program extension should you need additional time to complete your academic program. This procedure must be done BEFORE your I-20 expires. You can find the program extension form at the following ISS website.


******  Reminder:  If your program completes and/or your I-20 or DS 2019 expires at the end of the semester you will enter the grace period (60 days for F-1 students   30 days for J-1 student). During the grace period you may not travel outside of the United States and then return. If you depart US Port of Entry Officials will not let you return if the completion date of your I-20 or DS 2019 is in the past.




Spring Semester Registration and Less Than Full Time Course load


International students must be enrolled full time each semester. If you have a hold on your account or are not able to register before the start of the Spring 2017 semester your may be in jeopardy of having your I-20 terminated for “Failure to Enroll”.  


Less Than Full Time - Submission of Form to ISS

If you are in your final semester and do not have a full course load remaining to complete your degree, you are required to submit a completed Request for Less Than Full Time Enrollment form to International Student Services BEFORE the start of classes. Please complete the form located on the following website and submit to ISS prior to the start of the semester.


If you do not submit this form and are less than full time you may be in jeopardy of losing your F-1 status.



Curricular Practical Training


Are you planning to do Curricular Practical Training (CPT) during Winter session or  Spring 2017? Please keep in mind the FDU policy regarding CPT is any off campus work experience needs to have a work authorization attached to it either in the form of CPT or OPT.  This will include all paid or unpaid work, including off campus internships and training experiences.  If you are working without authorization it is considered a violation of immigration status.


Processing times for CPT is 5 – 7 business days and requires a CPT appointment with an ISS advisor after approval. If you plan to begin CPT during the Winter session you must apply early to ensure you can begin on time.

You must remember that you cannot begin working until you have been approved by our office and a new I-20 has been issued. For more information about CPT, please visit the Office of International Student Services website, or come to the office to pick up the CPT application package.



USCIS Fee Increase

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services Department, USCIS, has implemented a fee increase starting December 23, 2016.

This means any applications received on or after December 23rd will require the appropriate fee amount or the application will be rejected.

For a Federal Register Final Rule of the fee increase please see the below link.


Please note the following:

I-765 Optional Practical Training fee will increase to $410

I-539 Change of Status/Reinstatement will increase to $370


International Student Services recommends if you plan to apply for any of the benefits and have your application receipted by USCIS prior to the fee increase.

You must plan enough time for processing of your documents and submission to USCIS.

If you are applying for OPT you must submit your documents to ISS and allow 5-7 business days to process.  This will mean you should submit your documents as soon as possible.



Filing For Graduation


Please be aware that you must file for graduation in order to be considered as a graduate of your academic program. If you do not file for graduation you will not receive a diploma and you will not have completed your degree.


Graduation Ceremony happens in May 2017 -  The Graduation Ceremony Does Not Equal Completion of Degree.


Completion of your academic program - filing for graduation - and confirmation of program completion by Enrollment Services and your academic depart = Degree completion and graduation


For students who graduate this semester or in the winter session you will receive your diploma in late February or early March 2017.


Filing for Graduation


Filing for gradation is the responsibility of the individual student.  This is the first step in the process to confirm your degree completion by the university, and eventually have your diploma issued.


If you are in the final semester of your program, or you will be finishing your program in the winter session or in  Spring 2017 semester, you must File for Graduation through Webadvisor. This process will allow Enrollment Services and your Academic Department to review your eligibility for your degree completion. If you do not file for graduation you will not officially complete your degree or receive a diploma.


  1. You must visit the following website to review the process to file your graduation
  2. Enrollment Services will review your are eligible to graduate  by communicating with your Academic Department
  3. You will receive a notification via mail stating either your are completing your program or you have additional credits remaining.  
    This notification will only be sent via mail, so you must have your mailing address up to date with ISS. To update your address with ISS you may complete the Address form located in the ISS office.

****Proof of degree completion is required in many instances for international students.  For example – proof to an employer you have a earned a degree, applying for OPT STEM Extension, Government requirements.*****



Graduation Ceremony – May 2017

In addition, by filing for graduation you will also be able to attend the graduation ceremony in May 2017. Additional information on the ceremony will be posted on the FDU webpage in the early part of Spring 2017 semester.  
ISS will also post this information on the ISS FDU Facebook page, ISS News, and via email to enrolled Spring semester students. If you are completing your program this December or January please be sure to check either ISS FDU Facebook or ISS News for more information in the middle of February.


ISS FDU Facebook


ISS News