COVID-19 Information for F1 Students | Coppin State University

COVID-19 Information for F1 Students

F1 Students and COVID-19 Information

Recent events related to coronavirus (COVID-19) have placed Coppin in unchartered territory. As Coppin State University works to help students understand the evolving situation surrounding Coronavirus/COVID-19, we recognize that international students have unique concerns. Please review the information below to learn more about the concerns international students have inquired about. Please direct any questions to CTyree@coppin.edu.

Coppin is Working Remotely

International Student Services will be closed to walk-ins and in person appointments until further notice. ISS staff will be working remotely, and will be available via telephone and email, or for appointments via skype. ISS will continue to work as usual, remotely. We will remain available over email and can set up remote advising appointments as needed.

Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) Updates

Can nonimmigrant students participate in online classes?

SEVP is committed to remaining flexible in allowing schools to make temporary procedural adaptations so nonimmigrant students can continue to make normal forward progress in their program of study. They can temporarily engage in distance-learning, either from within the U.S. or outside the country, in light of COVID-19. SEVP will provide updated guidance as additional information concerning the scope and length of this situation becomes clearer.

Can nonimmigrant students participate in online classes from outside the U.S. and still maintain their nonimmigrant status?

Yes, nonimmigrant students can temporarily engage in distance-learning, either from within the U.S. or outside the country, in light of COVID-19.

Will students be able to return to the United States if they are continuing their studies outside of the country as a result of COVID-19?

Students who continue to make normal progress in their course of study remain eligible for admission into the United States. However, because of the changing array of travel restrictions, nonimmigrant students should refer to their local embassy’s website through the U.S. Department of State for any updates about visa issuance. Also, DHS and CDC websites both provide information about current travel restrictions to the United States

Courses

Instruction will continue remotely for the current semester. This does NOT present a problem for international students. The government agency that manages international students and scholars, called SEVP, has made it clear that under the circumstances, students can shift to remote instruction as per the decision of the school, for the current semester. Please be sure to continue to participate in your courses remotely and follow all directions from your professors.

Employment – On-Campus, CPT and OPT

On-Campus Employment

Please discuss your work with your supervisor to understand if you will be able to continue working after campus closes. Some roles will be able to continue and some will need to stop until campus reopens. Please discuss with your supervisor.

CPT – Curricular Practical Training

If you are eligible for CPT and would like to take advantage of this benefit under your current active F1 student status, please email the ISS office, directly to CTyree@coppin.edu to discuss your options and eligibility.

OPT – Optional Practical Training

OPT employment can be part-time (at least 20 hours) or full-time, and can be paid or unpaid.  It must be directly related to the degree you are working toward or have just completed. To date, USCIS is processing applications as they receive them and the process can take up to 3 months to receive an approval or denial of your submitted application.

Graduates currently on OPT and the STEM OPT Extension – There are no changes in the existing rules related to OPT and the STEM OPT Extension.

Travel

Please be aware that traveling internationally during the COVID-19 outbreak is very risky. Those contemplating traveling out of the United States may experience difficulty returning while the COVID-19 pandemic is continuing.

Be mindful that any international or domestic travel should be taken with caution and that the area you are travelling to could experience an outbreak and implement a quarantine, and you would not be able to leave that area until the quarantine is lifted.

Some countries are even barring nationals from re-entering. We recommend that students plan all travel in accordance with the above mentioned information.

Enrollment Requirements

At this time, there is no change to the F-1 enrollment rules.

F-1 students must be enrolled full-time in every semester unless a reduced course load form was completed, signed and submitted to the ISS office.

As we look ahead to next semester, please enroll in desired coursework as usual, following F-1 rules. If the usual operations of campus remain impacted next semester, Fall 2020, we’ll have updated options before that time from the University and from the government agency SEVP.