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Office of International
Students and Scholars

International Center 125
University of New Orleans
2000 Lakeshore Drive
New Orleans, LA 70148

Phone: (504) 280-6021
Fax: (504) 280-7317




Issue #68—April/May 2019

•  Optional Practical Training for graduating students— F-1 students who will be graduating in May 2019 and plan to apply for post-completion optional practical training are reminded that they should schedule an appointment with an OISS advisor as soon as possible to complete their OPT application.

F-1 students who have not yet begun the practical training application process are urged to do so soon in order to obtain the Employment Authorization Card in a timely manner. It is currently taking the USCIS Potomac Service Center approximately three to five months to process OPT employment authorization applications. However, there is no guarantee that the process will not take longer. Employment cannot begin until the card is "in hand."

•  Graduating students who will NOT apply for practical training— Students who will be ending their studies in May but have no plans to apply for practical training (F-1), academic training (J-1) or continue at a new school or in a new field or level of study must depart the United States within sixty days of completion of their academic program if they are in F-1 status, or within thirty days if they are in J-1 status.  F-1 students may also transfer to a new academic program during the 60-day grace period. Please check the dates on your I-20s and DS-2019s. If you are graduating and the program date needs to be shortened, please come to the OISS.

•  Income Tax Information —International students are not exempt from filing income tax forms – even if the U.S. has a tax treaty with the country of origin. If you are an international student who needs help filling out your tax forms, come to one of the income tax sessions. There are only two more days of tax sessions scheduled before the tax filing deadline

Thursday, April 4 th , 2:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. – Kirschman Hall 214 – India Day

Tuesday, April 9 th , 2:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. – Kirschman Hall 214

For more information on the tax sessions, please check: . Please remember the deadline for filing federal taxes is Monday, April 15 th , 2019

•  Scam Warning – Students have reported phone calls from individuals falsely claiming to represent government offices. Be cautious when discussing personal details with unknown entities over the phone, and DO NOT provide your Social Security Number, bank account numbers, or other sensitive information. Please consult with an OISS advisor if you have any questions or concerns.

•  I-20 or DS-2019 expiring? —Check your documents for the end date of your I-20 or DS-2019. If it is expiring in May 2019 and you will not be graduating, please make an appointment with an OISS advisor as soon as possible to discuss your situation. Updated financial documents are needed.

Students who will begin a new level of study (e.g., completing bachelor's and commencing master's or completing master's and commencing PhD) will need to request their new I-20 at OISS. Updated financial documents are needed.

•  Graduating or departing students (not returning) - If you are graduating this semester or leaving UNO, let OISS know your plans. You can come into our office or email .

•  Returning to your home country

•  Transferring to another university in the United States

•  Returning to UNO for another degree program and/or a new level of the same program

•  Returning Students - Make sure to check your university student account to ensure that all university fees are assessed correctly, and make sure to pay your fee bill by May 29 at 4:30 pm for summer and August 13 at 4:30 pm for fall to avoid late fees.

Complete and submit the OISS “Change of Address” form (available on OISS website) within 10 days of moving.

All students must submit a new Insurance Coverage Evaluation Form each semester . Insurance requirements and forms are available at .

•  Employment Authorization - If you plan on working, please keep in mind that you need to meet with an International Advisor BEFORE beginning any employment (student worker positions, Internship through COOP, Internship for Academic credit, Graduate or Teaching Assistantship positions).

•  Travelling over Summer Break? — Be sure to have your I-20 or DS-2019 when you travel, as well as the other recommended documents listed on our Travel Instructions Handout . Also, make sure that you have a valid travel signature on your I-20 or DS-2019. The travel signature should be less than six months old as of the date you will return to the United States. If you need a travel signature, please bring your I-20 or DS-2019 in to OISS for processing at least 10 days before your trip .

**You must be registered for the Fall 2019 semester in order for OISS to process a travel signature. **

Fall classes are scheduled to begin on Wednesday, August 14, 2019. Please be sure to make your travel arrangements to return to New Orleans before that time.


•  Travel Information Session - The OISS will hold a travel information session on Monday, April 8 th at 12:30 p.m. in the International Center Student Lounge. The session is open to all F-1 and J-1 students. We encourage you to attend, especially if you plan on traveling during the summer. Advisors will provide guidance on travel within and outside the United States and answer any travel-related questions you might have.

•  Speech-Language Tutoring – Interested in improving your communication and English-language skills? Dr. Aloma Lykes is offering speech-language pathology sessions to a limited number of students. Please send us your contact information for us to pass along to her if you are interested. Inclusion will be decided on a first come, first served basis.

•  Have you ever received a new I-20 or DS-2019 from OISS? What should you do with your old I-20 or DS-2019? You should always keep any immigration documents that have been issued to you, even when you are given a new document with updated information or transfer to a new school. The forms I-20 or DS-2019 issued to you throughout your time in the U.S. are a record of your immigration status and these original documents will be needed in the future to apply for immigration benefits. Do not throw these documents away. Always keep them in a safe place for your records.

•  BCM Event: Free Crawfish Boil, Thursday, April 4 th at 6:00 p.m., at The Fly (on the levee behind Audubon Zoo) - Sign up at the following link : before Monday, April 1 st to join the BCM for their annual crawfish boil! You and any friends you want to bring are invited, but please be sure to have each friend sign up separately using the link below, to be sure there is enough crawfish for all! Transportation will be provided – indicate in the sign-up form if you will need a ride. If you need a ride, meet in front of the UNO University Center at 5:00 p.m. on Thursday, and the group will leave from there. If you have a car, but do not know where to go, feel free to follow the group form UNO or contact Kimberly Myers at: for directions.

•  Jazz Fest 2019— The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival is a highlight of New Orleans' unique culture and musical heritage. The first weekend of Jazz Fest 2019 begins on Thursday, April 25 and goes through Sunday, May 5. Check the music lineup and information on tickets for the 2019 festival at: .

•  French Quarter Fest – The French Quarter Festival is the largest free music festival in the U.S. that brings music and food fans to New Orleans's oldest neighborhood every April. In 2019, the free, four-day music and culture festival will be held April 11 to 14. Enjoy over 300 hours of entertainment featuring more than 400 musical performances on twenty-three stages throughout the French Quarter over four days. It will also feature traditional, South Louisiana food from a host of vendors. For more information visit: .

•  New Orleans Fairs and Festivals — Festival season in New Orleans has begun! Check out a list of fairs and festivals throughout the New Orleans Gambit's 2019 Guide to Louisiana Fairs and Festivals for April and for May .

•  Spring Semester Campus Events— For a calendar of events taking place on campus this month, check out UNO's Event Calendar at:

And Student Involvement and Leadership's Calendar at:

•  Spring Semester 2019 University Calendar— To view the official university calendar for Spring 2019, please go to the following link:

Important April/May Dates

April 1: Registration for 2019 Summer Session and 2019 Fall Semester begins

April 5: Last date for thesis & dissertation defenses to be held for Spring 2019 Graduate degree candidates

April 19-20: Good Friday Holiday – University Closed

May 6: Last day of classes

May 8-16: Final examination period

May 17: COMMENCEMENT at 3:00 p.m. at Lakefront Arena

May 20: Final grades available on Web-STAR

May 23: Degree Conferral date for Spring 2019

OISS Spring Walk-In Hours Reminder

Monday & Thursday       8:00 am -12:00 pm
                                           2:00 pm-4:00 pm
Tuesday & Friday            9:00 am-12:30 pm
                                           1:30 pm-4:00 pm

Wednesday                     1:30 pm-4:00 pm

Walk-in consultations are for quick 10-15 minute discussions. You will receive assistance on a first-come, first-served basis.

Appointments are at specific times and with specific advisors. If your discussion involves changing status, an OPT or CPT application, or any other complex situation, please make an appointment. Please call 504-280-6021 to schedule an appointment or send an email to .

Please note: For past issues of OISS News please check our website under the heading “OISS News”




The University of New Orleans • 2000 Lakeshore Drive, New Orleans, LA 70148
(504) 280-6000 • Toll-Free at (888) 514-4275