Fall 2021 Student Check-In & Enrollment Reminders
We are excited to welcome students back to campus this fall. Please see instructions below for Fall 2021 check-in procedures. Boston University is required to confirm your enrollment to the Department of Homeland Security through the Student Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) at the start of each semester. We have changed how we will register your SEVIS record this fall so please read this information carefully and contact the ISSO team should you have any questions.
Initial ISSO Check-in
All students who are:
- beginning a new program of study or,
- returning to campus from a leave of absence or,
- travelling to the US for the first time after beginning studies remotely from home country
must complete Initial ISSO check-in remotely through functions on the Student Link. You should only complete Initial ISSO check-in after you have entered the US in F-1 student status. We will review your immigration documents and register your record in SEVIS. Please follow our remote check -in procedures as you are not required to report to the ISSO in-person.
SEVIS Registration for Continuing Students
SEVIS registration for continuing students (previously referred to as Semester Verification) will be completed based on your academic registration. You are not required to report to the ISSO in person for check-in.
It is essential that you keep your addresses in Personal Tab on the Student Link up to date throughout the fall semester:
- Foreign-Immigration address should reflect your address in your home country
- US-Immigration address should reflect your current US address. If you are living on campus, this address will automatically reflect your BU housing address.
Student immigration regulations require that you enroll full-time each academic semester. For most students, full-time is a minimum of 12 credits. Some graduate student programs may have different full-time equivalents, but you must be certified as a full-time student to maintain your immigration status. F-1 regulations only allow for you to take one class remote or online class towards your 12-credit minimum enrolment requirement so you must enroll in at least 8 credits of in-person coursework. See more details on maintaining student immigration status.
If it is your last semester and you need less than 12 credits to graduate, you should request a Reduced Course Load from ISSO at the start of the semester.
Immigration regulations allow international students to work on-campus up to 20 hours per week during the regular semester. You can read more about being hired to work on-campus on the ISSO website. If you have not worked on-campus before, you will need to complete an I-9 Employment Eligibility Form with ISSO before you begin work.
ISSO will assist international students in completing I-9s to verify employment eligibility for on-campus employment. In order to complete the process, international students will need to do the following:
- Find a job on campus or with a qualified institutional affiliate. On-Campus employment includes service based graduate financial awards (Research Assistantship, Teaching Fellowship, Stipend, or others)
- Register for a full course of study.
- Know the conditions and hours of employment of your work permission.
- Complete section 1 of the I-9 Employment Eligibility Verification Form. If you are in F-1 status, please follow the guidance on how to complete section 1 of the I-9 form.
- Review additional details below depending on whether you are a new or continuing student.
- If you are a new student to BU, you will be required to complete Initial ISSO check-in as a new student. Be sure to indicate during the check-in process that you have been offered an on-campus job.
- If you are a new student to BU and have already completed your new student check-in and have since found a job on-campus, please follow the directions provided below for continuing students.
- Your I-9 will be processed within 3 business days from the date you complete section 1 based on the documents you submitted via your Initial ISSO check-in.
- Once you have completed section 1 of the I-9, send an email to email@example.com and include the following:
- Your Name and BUID number
- Your first day of employment – the day you begun or will begin to work on-campus
- The first time you entered the US in F-1 status
- A copy of your most recent I-94 (not the history page). You can retrieve your most recent I-94 from the US Custom and Border Protection website.
- A copy of your most recent I-20 document if you are in F-1 status
- Your I-9 will be processed within 3 business days from the date you complete section 1 and we receive your email with the requested dates and I-94 record.
- If you do not have a Social Security Number, you will need to apply for one after you secure a job. Some Social Security Offices remain closed to walk-in traffic due to COVID-19, but you can review details of how you can apply for an SSN on our interim COVID-19 FAQs page.
Fall 2021 ISSO Services
Visit our Menu of Services to for the latest ISSO procedures. Zoom with our virtual Advisor-On-Call to ask quick questions or schedule a virtual appointment with your advisor for a more detailed conversation!