International Student Advisory Council (ISAC)
What is ISAC?
- Enhance the international student experience at St. Francis College
- Provide feedback and suggestions in order to provide effective programs and services
- Develop relationships with other SFC departments and student organizations
- Serve as an advocate for international students at St. Francis College
ISAC is an initiative to the response to the needs that go unaddressed as the result of a growing international student population.
Who is ISAC?
ISAC is made up of a group of international students from a wide range of disciplines across the St. Francis Community. ISAC actively collaborates with International Student Programs and Services, Student Activities, Residence Life and Housing, Multicultural Affairs, and multiple academic and administrative departments.
Council service time
Council members will be expected to serve at least one academic year with a possibility of returning for additional years. Elections are held every spring semester through a nomination process.
- Meet twice per full month during each semester (approximately six 6 times per semester) for one hour
- Attend fall and spring international student orientations
- Undertake special projects throughout the year
Study in the States
Study in the States is a free government resource website that explains the rules and regulations governing the international student process in the United States.
Through their easy-to-use site, students can:
- Search for approved schools
- Access a glossary of terms
- Use the resource library
- Visit frequently asked questions
- Watch tutorials
Commonly Used Terms
United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS)
The department that oversees the safety of the United States from all threats, foreign or domestic. This department is the overarching area in which all other immigration departments are under.
United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)
The agency that handles all immigration related matters. When you apply for OPT or STEM Extension, you are doing so through USCIS.
United States Customs and Border Protection (CBP)
CBP protects America’s borders and regulates what goods enter the country. Each time you arrive at a border (land, air, or sea), you will meet with a CBP officer. They will determine your eligibility to enter the United States. These meetings are usually 1-2 minutes but may be longer if additional information is needed from you. It is important to always have the necessary documents (passport, I-20, visa, etc.) in hand before speaking with a CBP officer.
United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)
ICE's primary mission is to promote homeland security and public safety through the criminal and civil enforcement of federal laws governing border control, customs, trade and immigration.
Transportation Security Administration (TSA)
TSA’s mission is to protect the nation's transportation systems to ensure freedom of movement for people and commerce. You will see TSA agents when you go through security to board planes in the U.S.
Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP)
SEVP monitors F and M students and their dependents while in the United States to ensure that rules and regulations are followed by international students. The program also certifies schools to allow them to enroll F or M students. International students studying in the United States can only attend an SEVP-certified school. To be certified, schools must prove that they are operational, meaning that they possess the necessary facilities and instructors, and engage in course instruction prior to requesting SEVP certification. SEVP also monitors the SEVIS database.
Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS)
The database Designated School Officials (DSO) use to enter your biographical, academic, and financial information needed for your Form I-20. All information transmitted through this application becomes the property of DHS and the United States Department of State.
Form I-20, Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant Student Status (I-20)
All “F” students that study in the United States require a Form I-20. The I-20 proves that you are legally enrolled in a program of study in the United States.
F-1 student visa (F-1)
The type of visa issued to students who have been admitted to SEVP-certified schools.
F-2 visa (F-2)
The type of visa issued to dependants (spouse or children) of the F-1 student visa holder. Each F-2 will receive their own I-20 and have to apply for an F-2 visa in the same way the F-1 would have to.
Form I-94 (I-94)
Upon your admission to the United States at a port of entry, you will be issued a Form I‑94. International students who enter the country at an air or sea port of entry are issued an electronic form. It shows the terms of your admission, including your legal status, length of time you may stay and expected departure date.
Curricular Practical Training (CPT)
Training (employment) that is directly related to your program of study (internship, student teaching, etc.).
Optional Practical Training (OPT)
Training that is directly related to your program of study. If you want to work after your program completes, you would apply for OPT through USCIS.
The H-1B status is a temporary employment authorization for a nonimmigrant who performs services in a specialty occupation.
The visa type that allows exchange visitors to enter the U.S. This is for individuals approved to participate in a work-and-study based exchange visitor program. This visa type is common for short-term study abroad students and visiting faculty.
The J-2 visa is a dependant (spouse or children) of the J-1 exchange visitor. J-2 visa holders hold certain benefits such as working and studying while in the U.S.