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This message was sent to all students with an active, initial, change of status or transfer-pending F-1 record at JHU on July 7, 2020.

You have probably read JHU’s message regarding fall 2020 guidance from the Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP). As you navigate this complicated, unfavorable situation, OIS is committed to providing you with comprehensive, individualized information as it impacts your visa status.

As a starting point, we created the Fall 2020 SEVP Student Impact Grid that details a variety of student scenarios and the impact for each situation. In addition to reviewing the grid, it is important that you understand the fall 2020 instructional model for your JHU school so you can determine whether it falls under Category 1 (Fully Online Model) or Category 3 (Special Hybrid Model) on the grid. At this time, most JHU schools and programs are expecting to operate under Category 3 since they will offer a combination of online, hybrid, and in-person courses. If you have any questions about your school’s fall 2020 instructional model, please reach out to your JHU department or academic advisor. Please note that this grid is subject to change pending additional guidance or FAQs from SEVP, or if there are significant changes to JHU schools instructional models. OIS will update the grid as needed.

Of particular note, SEVP guidance also clearly states that, if a school changes its instructional model at any point in the semester to completely remote instruction (for any reason), all F-1 students in the U.S. must make plans to depart once such a change is made.

In addition to the impacts outlined on the grid stemming from the SEVP fall 2020 guidance, there are still several other restrictions and potential barriers to entry to the U.S. that students should consider. OIS monitors all these situations closely:

· Worldwide Suspension of Routine Visa Services at the U.S. Embassies; see notice here. If you are outside the U.S. and your F-1 visa stamp is expired, you must obtain a new F-1 visa before you can re-enter the U.S.

· COVID-19 U.S. travel restrictions; see our full FAQ here

· Controls at U.S. Mexico and Canada Land Borders; see notice here

· Travel bans on select countries; see our FAQ here

· Availability of international flights to the U.S.

Next Steps:

SEVP’s guidance requires OIS to update all F-1 student records and to reissue I-20s in many cases.* To do so, we will need to collect information from our students, so please expect follow up communication from us in the near future.

*F-1 students on Optional Practical Training are not impacted by this most recent guidance. F-1 students who are engaged in OPT may remain in the U.S. No additional guidance has been provided by SEVP regarding OPT.

We realize that you have many factors to consider when making plans for fall semester. We also understand that this is an incredibly stressful time and that this new guidance may impact your life in ways far beyond your visa status. For additional support, we strongly urge you to take advantage of all the various health and wellness resources for JHU students. Additional information is available at https://wellness.jhu.edu/.

If you have any questions, you can reach OIS at ois@jhu.edu or 667-208-7001. We appreciate your patience in awaiting a reply, as currently inquiry volume is extremely high and we may require more than the normal 1-2 days to respond.

On June 22, 2020, the Trump administration released a proclamation entitled “Proclamation Suspending Entry of Aliens Who Present a Risk to the U.S. Labor Market Following the Coronavirus Outbreak.”

This order does not impact our J-1 exchange visitors or F-1 students, including those on OPT or STEM OPT.

The order does impact new H-1B temporary workers who are outside the U.S. and do not have an H-1B visa with an issue date prior to June 24, 2020. OIS will be communicating directly by email with all impacted H-1B individuals very soon with guidance tailored to their circumstances.

We will update this page with more details as they become available.

On June 3, 2020 the U.S. Department of Transportation issued an order to "suspend scheduled passenger operations of all Chinese carriers to and from the United States."  The order will become effective on June 16, 2020.  

USCIS announced Friday plans for the resumption of premium processing service for certain petitions. If your Department already has a H-1B case in progress with the OIS or has a H-1B case pending with USCIS, you may contact the H-1B advisor assigned to the case to inquire about upgrading the case to premium processing. Do not mail a check to USCIS directly. The full announcement from USCIS is included below.

USCIS Resumes Premium Processing for Certain Petitions

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services today announced that it will resume premium processing for Form I-129, Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker and Form I-140, Immigrant Petition for Alien Workers, in phases over the next month.

Effective June 1, 2020, USCIS will accept Form I-907, Request for Premium Processing Service for all eligible Form I-140 petitions.

Effective June 8, USCIS will accept premium processing requests for:

  • H-1B petitions filed before June 8 that are pending adjudication and are cap-exempt (for example, petitions filed by petitioners that are cap-exempt and petitions filed for beneficiaries previously counted toward the numerical allocations).
  • All other Form I-129 petitions (non H-1B petitions) for nonimmigrant classifications eligible for premium processing filed before June 8 that are pending adjudication.

Effective June 15, USCIS plans on resuming premium processing for:

  • H-1B petitions requesting premium processing by filing an I-907 concurrently with their I-129 (or request for a petition filed on or after June 8) and are exempt from the cap because:
  • The employer is cap-exempt or because the beneficiary will be employed at a qualifying cap-exempt institution, entity or organization (such as an institution of higher education, a nonprofit research organization or a governmental research organization); or
  • The beneficiary is cap-exempt based on a Conrad/IGA waiver under INA section 214(l).

Effective June 22, USCIS plans on resuming premium processing for all other Form I-129 petitions, including:

  • All H-1B cap-subject petitions (including those for fiscal year 2021), including change of status from F-1 nonimmigrant status, for both premium processing upgrades and concurrently filed I-907s.
  • All other Form I-129 petitions for nonimmigrant classifications eligible for premium processing and requesting premium processing by filing an I-907 concurrently with their I-129.

All dates are subject to change as USCIS continues to take on more premium processing requests and USCIS will announce any changes to these dates accordingly.

On April 22 President Trump issued the "Proclamation Suspending Entry of Immigrants Who Present Risk to the U.S. Labor Market During the Economic Recovery Following the COVID-19 Outbreak" .  This does not impact individuals in a non-immigrant visa status such as F-1, J-1, H-1B, O-1, or TN or their dependents.