International Student Scholar Services

 

 SPRING SEMESTER 2022 FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQ) AND IMPORTANT ARRIVAL GUIDELINES 

 

Q:  What are the enrollment requirements for continuing students during the Spring 2022 semester?

A:   On April 26, 2021 the Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) announced that F visa students and schools certified by SEVP should continue to abide by guidance issued in March 2020 for the upcoming 2021-22 academic year.  This guidance allows continuing students to enroll in additional online classes as needed due to the Covid-19 pandemic in the event campus-based classes are not available. 

     You may maintain your F-1 status as long as you have a minimum of 12 credit hours ( 9 credits for graduate students). Students in their last semester or on thesis may be below the minimum.   Please note that Columbia College Chicago's Spring 2022 schedule consists of about 80% campus-based or hybrid classes and about 20% of the courses are totally online.  Therefore, continuing students outside the U.S. may not be able to study full-time overseas due to a stronger campus-based schedule.  

Q:  What are the enrollment requirements for new students and students who did not attend classes last year during the Fall 2021 semester?  

A:  If you are a new student or a student who took an academic break and have an "initial" I-20, you must enroll in at least one campus-based course.  However, we recommend you enroll in at least two campus-based classes in the event a class later is cancelled or moved online.  You may not study entirely online in the Spring 2022 unless you remain outside the U.S. for the duration of the semester.   

Q:  I am a returning student who took one or more semesters off due to COVID-19.  Do I need a new I-20 and visa to return to the U.S.?

A:   In most cases, you will need a new I-20 and will need to pay a new SEVIS fee.  However, as long as your student visa is valid, you may use the same visa with the new I-20. Please contact isss@colum.edu for additional instructions. 

Q:  When does the Spring 2022 international student insurance policy start?   

A:   The Spring 2022 plan becomes effective on January 24, 2022.  

Q:  I am a continuing student but will study online in my home country during the spring semester.  Am I still able to continue working “virtually” on-campus if my current job is available?

A:   If you already were authorized for campus employment and your hiring department still wishes to have you work, you may work from your home country.  Direct deposit in a U.S. bank is required as payroll cannot deposit funds in a foreign bank account or send checks overseas.

Q:  I am a continuing student who will require a new I-20 for the spring.  Does this effect CPT or OPT?  

A:    The issuance of a new I-20 sets your F-1 status back to the beginning.  To be eligible for CPT (internship) or OPT after you graduate, you must complete an academic year in F-1 status, therefore you won’t be eligible for either CPT or OPT until the end of the fall 2022 semester. 

Q:  I will graduate in the current semester, but I am unable to return to campus and will complete my last semester online.    Am I still eligible to apply for OPT and return to the U.S. to work for one year if my OPT is approved?  

A:   You may still be eligible to apply for OPT if your SEVIS record is still active.  Please contact isss@colum.edu if you are completing your final degree requirements online outside the U.S. but are still interested in applying for OPT.  

 Q:  Will Columbia College Chicago require proof of vaccination to attend school?   Will it accept vaccinations from other countries?   

A:  On April 19, 2021 Columbia College Chicago announced that it would require all students to be vaccinated against COVID-19 in order to attend classes on-campus.  Columbia College accepts all FDA and WHO approved vaccines.  For more specific details please contact isss@colum.edu for a copy of the school's COVID-19 vaccination requirements and deadlines for the Spring 2022 semester.   

Q:   If my country is still not able to provide a Covid-19 vaccination, may I come to the U.S. unvaccinated?

A:    For a list of countries that can travel to the U.S. without being fully vaccinated against COVID-19 please see:  

Exempt Countries

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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