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Steering Committee
Preparation for SEVIS - 2003
Initial SEVIS Implementation

January 9, 2003

SEVIS Steering Committee Meeting Minutes

Update on UIS and ISSO SEVIS Working Group Meetings

  • UIS had a successful transmission of data from UIS to fsaATLAS
  • On Jan. 24, all records will be moved from fsaATLAS 5 to fsaATLAS 6.05
  • Training for all DSOs, ISSO Staff, International Admissions and CELOP will occur around Wednesday Jan. 29 and Thursday, Jan. 30.  The training will include fsaATLAS 6.1, RTI, and UIS Web screens
  • ISSO plans to stop issuing I-20s on Friday, January 24.  For one-week there will be no document issuance so that the data downloaded will be clean.
  • The ISSO has not been contacted for a site visit yet.  USCIS is overwhelmed and we believe that USCIS may start approving schools for RTI use without site visits as of Jan. 30.
  • The batch system is not ready and we are not sure when it will be ready for use. Once it is up, we will test data before we plunge in.  If the batch system is ready at the end of January, the plan is to test data throughout February and begin using it in March if all tests go well.
  • After Jan. 29, we can no longer use the current system, so anyone needing a new document will be entered and issued a document in SEVIS.  We have determined our last day if issuance will be January 24 to give us some time to migrate data.
  • The ISSO plans to integrate all continuing students in April and May, in time for our students to travel provided the batch system is working.
  • The ISSO has not received any information about the J application but will receive an approval and a password through e-mail, which has not been received yet.
  • DSOs (F) and ROs (J) are separate and still have to follow separate regulations.
  • Once BU is in the RTI system, DSOs can be changed and it will be effective immediately.  (Previous regulations allowed them a 60-day grace period within which to apply).
  • January graduates are required to apply for OPT by January 25 according to the new regulations and the ISSO is contacting students immediately.
  • The ISSO is informing students about SEVIS regulations through e-mail, direct mailings and handouts when students cont to the ISSO.  As the ISSO contacts students to pick up new SEVIS documents, there will be mandatory group sessions, which students will attend and be given additional information.
  • Grad Admissions screens have been enhanced by UIS.  New screens have been developed for the ISSO, International Admissions and CELOP and may be available for other offices at a later date.
  • In RTI, UIS can create cheat sheet reports so that data entry, processing, etc can be streamlined if necessary for undergrad admissions data entry.
  • Data entry in RTI is limited to the DSOs and according to government regulations, passwords and ids cannot be shared.  Don't want to jeopardize BU's status with the government
  • UIS will be Beta testing with Newfront Software, possibly in February.  They will use real data, real population.
  • Grad Admissions/Application Process
    • Graduate Admissions already asks for all the information that is needed for SEVIS
    • The ISDF collects all of the correct data but it depends on when the school/college requests the ISDF.
  • International Undergraduate Admissions will begin collecting city of birth and foreign address information via e-mail for fall 2003 admissions and then modify application forms for the future.

Special Registration

  • 1st phase - 5 countries
  • 2nd phase - additional 13 countries
  • 3rd phase - Saudi Arabia and Pakistan added (Total of 20 countries)
  • Students have told us that they have waited in long lines but they are treated with respect.  The ISSO suggests that students check in with them before they go down to the USCIS.  The ISSO has found a few students to be out of status and has helped them get into status before going down to register at USCIS.
  • Students must register their presence at the USCIS in Boston or when entering the US at the airport.  If they are at the airport, they are photographed and fingerprinted and told that they must go to their local USCIS.
  • The ISSO gives out Certificates of Attendance verifying students full-time status.
  • All students are required to return to the USCIS on or around their one-year check-in anniversary.
  • There are still likely to be more countries but it is only males between the ages of 16 and 45.  This includes anyone born in any of those countries and excludes those born in one of the 20 countries listed but are US Permanent Residents or Citizens.
  • All non-immigrants must register, not just Fs and Js.  This includes H-1Bs, TNs, O-1s, etc.
  • We are not sure what will happen to students who register late, after the deadline.  They may be considered out of status.

Update from the Records Issues Subcommittee

  • Kathy Hynes of Student Accounting attended the last Records Meeting.
    • Bursar holds were discussed and they are not as serious as previously thought.  There is no concern for 3rd party billing, as these student's records are not placed on hold.
    • If a student doesn't pay their bill, they can't register for classes, they are considered out of status.
    • RA and GTF's don't pay their health insurance.  Student accounts can set up a payment plan.
    • Student Accounts will run some numbers to determine whether we should evaluate bursar holds further.

Update on Scholars

  • January 21, 1pm meeting with he Office of personnel, Payroll, ISSO, UIS, Provost's Office, etc. to continue to discuss J-1 scholars and employee screens and processing.
  • Screens for J-1s will be used by the ISSO and eventually distributed to other BU administrators.
  • Elizabeth Ancarana from the Office of the Provost is supposed to be joining the meetings
  • ISSO will set up IDs for scholars until everyone on campus is trained on the system.
  • Dependents  - not much reporting.  Terminated when principal is terminated.
  • Scholars - ISSO is not always informed when a scholar leaves.  Now this will be systematic, at least for paid scholars as they are in UIS.  We will rely on department notification for unpaid scholars.
  • Continuing scholars will be integrated into SEVIS in June.
  • Students and scholars can travel with their old document until August 1, 2003 but they must have a valid visa stamp in their passport otherwise they need a new SEVIS document to apply for a new visa.

Next SEVIS Steering Committee Meeting:

Tuesday, January 28, 2003
4th Floor Conference Room, Provost's Office
145 Bay State Road


Boston University
February 28, 2005

Boston University International Students & Scholars Office