COVID-19 Resources

Current Student COVID FAQ
OPT COVID FAQ
Immigration Updates
 

Our office is open Monday through Friday, 8 am to 5 pm for document pick up only. Please continue to submit document requests via email or iNorthTX. 
All advising will be held virtually via email at internationaladvising@unt.edu, via Zoom appointment, or via telephone during advising hours.

Virtual Advising

Mondays 1:30-3:30 p.m.
Tuesdays and Thursdays 9:30-11:30 a.m. and 1:30-3:30 p.m.
Fridays 9:30-11:30 a.m.

Schedule an Appointment for Virtual Advising via Zoom - Students and scholars will be connected with a UNT Immigration Advisor. Please note, virtual advising is meant for shorter inquiries, and in order to serve all students and scholars, we ask that advising be limited to 10 minutes.

Remember, general inquiries can still be submitted to internationaladvising@unt.edu.
J-1 Students and Scholars, please email jinfo@unt.edu and your Senior Immigration Advisor will schedule a time to speak with you via phone or Zoom.

Visa Status Questions – Impact of Moving Online

ISSS has received guidance from the Department of Homeland Security and separately from the Department of State that F-1 and J-1 students’ visa status will not be affected by the move of Fall 2020 classes to online and alternative delivery. F-1 and J-1 students must continue to maintain full-time enrollment despite the shift to online and alternative delivery. Below is a flow chart outlining enrollment requirements to maintain status for Spring 2021. 

Immigration Flow Chart

Departing the U.S. to Complete Studies Online

ISSS has received guidance from the Department of Homeland Security and separately from the Department of State that F-1 and J-1 students’ visa status who wish to return to their home country to continue online studies may do so for the Spring 2021 semester. This notice suspends the 5-month rule for absences which allows students to remain outside the US for more than 5 months without impact to SEVIS record. ISSS will maintain your F-1 I-20 or J-1 DS-2019 while you are out-of-country for Spring 2021 as long as you maintain full-time enrollment. Your I-20/DS-2019 and F-1/J-1 student status is not in any jeopardy. Please note that F-1 and J-1 students must continue to maintain full-time enrollment despite the shift to online and alternative delivery.

Please be aware that travel abroad may be challenging at the moment. Many countries have introduced restrictions on transit and entry. We recommend that you monitor conditions through your home country’s Embassy page.

Returning to UNT in Spring 2021

If you depart the country either this semester or in summer, don’t forget that you will need the following to be able to return to the U.S. on F-1 or J-1 student visa status:

  1. a valid travel signature on your I-20 or DS-2019,
  2. a valid passport,
  3. a valid F-1 or J-1 visa stamp.

If you have already departed the U.S. and did not get a travel signature before your departure, please submit a Request for Revised I-20 via iNorthTX. Email jinfo@unt.edu if you need a travel signature for your DS-2019. You must prepay for document shipping via eShipGlobal through iNorthTX.

At this time, it is unknown what the state of travel bans and Entry Bans will be in the Spring Semester. Some of these bans are temporary, but the situation is constantly changing. In addition, you may need to plan to self-isolate inside the United States for 14 days prior to returning to campus from an international trip. UNT's travel restrictions can be found online at: https://healthalerts.unt.edu/

Spring 2021 enrollment will be required for all international students to maintain their F-1 or J-1 student immigration status. The Fall 2020 guidance regarding online enrollment will continue to Spring 2021. Students who had valid F1/J1 status in March 2020, will be allowed to enroll in 100% online or remote delivery. Students admitted to the U.S. to begin F-1 or J-1 status in Fall 2020 or Spring 2021 must enroll in at least one course that is face-to-face, partially remote, or partially online.

If you do go back to your home country during Spring 2021, it is vitally important that you monitor HealthAlerts.unt.edu for the most recent campus information, that you stay aware of CDC travel watches, alerts and warnings, and seek out additional CDC and State Department updates, and that you monitor our website for immigration-related travel updates

Graduating in December?

International Student & Scholar Services is processing OPT applications online via email. Please note: Students applying for OPT must be inside the United States at the time of application. Those considering departure from the U.S. for the term need to communicate with ISSS about their plans and seek advice. internationaladvising@unt.edu.

Restrictions on Travel to the U.S. from China, Iran, Europe, and Brazil

  1. On Friday, January 31, 2020, President Trump signed Proclamation 9984 which suspends entry into the United States of all foreign nationals (immigrants, nonimmigrants, and other non U.S. citizens) who were physically present within the People's Republic of China (excluding Macau and Hong Kong) during the 14-day period preceding their entry or attempted entry into the United States. There are some exclusions to this suspended entry. This ban is effective February 2nd at 4:00 pm central standard time. 
     
  2. On February 29, 2020, an additional Presidential Proclamation was issued. This proclamation suspends entry of all foreign nationals (immigrants, nonimmigrants, and other non U.S. citizens) who were physically present within Iran during the 14 day period prior to their entry or attempted entry to the United States. There are some exclusions to this suspended entry. This ban is effective March 2nd at 4:00 pm central standard time. 
     
  3. On March 11, 2020, President Trump issued an additional Presidential Proclamation that suspends entry of all foreign nationals (immigrants, nonimmigrants, and other non U.S. citizens) who were physically present within one or more of 26 European countries during the 14 day period prior to their entry or attempted entry to the United States. There are some exclusions (such as immediate family members to US citizens) to this suspended entry. This ban will go into effect on March 13th at 10:59 pm central daylight time. The impacted countries are: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland.
     
  4. On March 13, 2020, President Trump added the United Kingdom and Ireland to the list of suspended entry for foreign nationals. This travel ban will go into effect at 10:59 pm central daylight time on March 16th. 
  5. On March 26, 2020, President Trump added Brazil to the list of suspended entry for foreign nationals. This travel ban will go into effect at 10:59 pm central daylight time on March 26th. 

All flights will be routed through 13 airports for additional screening for those who meet exceptions. Read more.

Updated 12.15.2020