ISSS-BU News 24 December 2012 ISSS-BU News
An electronic news service for international students and scholars, owned by the Office of International Student and Scholar Services at Binghamton University, State University of New York
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Editor's Note: The Office of International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) is open today, Monday, December 24, 2012 from 9:30am to 3:45pm. After December 24, the ISSS, along with most other University offices, will be on holiday curtailment through January 1, 2013. During the curtailment, e-mail, voice mail and faxes are being checked, but not every day. If there is a health or safety emergency, please call University Police at 607-777-2393. The ISSS will re-open on Wednesday, January 2, 2013 at 9:30am. We hope that our subscribers enjoy their holiday.
As calendar year 2012 draws to a close, we wish all our subscribers a happy and peaceful New Year!
CONTENTS:1. View Fall 2012 International Student Graduation Reception Photos
2. National Holidays for January
3. International Students and DWI/DUI Arrests or Convictions
4. Are You A Native Or Near-Native Speaker Of Spanish?
5. Campus Recreation Services invites you to enjoy their facilities free of charge from January 2 to 23!
6. Did You Receive a Tax Form From Your Bank, Form W-8 BEN?
7. Tax Time is Coming
8. Taking a Winter Session Class at BU? Remember That Confirmation of Enrollment Is Required
9. Are You Assisting New International Students for Spring 2013?
Visit the ISSS Facebook page, http://www.facebook.com/ISSS.BinghamtonUniversity to view photos from the December 15, 2012 International Student Graduation Reception. See how many people you recognize!!
Please remember to “like us” when you visit the Facebook page!
The following countries are celebrating national holidays during the month of January:
International students hope that they will never be arrested or convicted for a crime while in the United States. But many students do not know that a single arrest for drunk driving, commonly known as Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) or Driving While Under the Influence (DUI) can have serious implications for student visa renewals abroad or an application for a visa in a new category (such as H-1B).
To learn more, go to this link
Why not apply for an LRS position? We would like to encourage you to visit our website and to submit an application as soon as possible, but by January 15, 2013.
The Languages Across the Curriculum (LxC) program is now accepting applications for the position of Language Resource Specialist (LRS) for Spring 2013 who speak Spanish.
Based on work with LxC staff, instructors and other LRS colleagues, LRSs design a syllabus for the Languages Across the Curriculum study group and research and prepare reading assignments (or films or internet-based assignments). LRSs lead discussions of these assignments in the study groups and evaluate students' performance. Throughout the semester, LRSs compile a Blackboard-based teaching portfolio consisting of all the materials used in the study group. LRSs are expected to meet weekly for mandatory LxC staff training.
The ideal candidate will have previous teaching experience, strong analytical and critical thinking skills; be eager to develop pedagogical skills that foster a globalized understanding of the world, have very strong English language skills and native or near-native proficiency in one or more other languages. LxC supports an array of courses in a variety of disciplines including, but not limited to: Environmental Studies or Life Sciences, American History, Political Science, Education and Human Development, Theater, International Business, Engineering, and Marketing.
LRSs work 5-10 hours per week. Weekly study group meetings led by each LRS begin in the 5th week of classes, scheduled at the convenience of the LRS and her/his students.
NOTE: THIS IS NOT AN ASSISTANTSHIP.
Use the PDF form available in this link to apply: http://lxc.binghamton.edu/forms/LRS_appl_form.pdf, or call for a hard copy to be mailed to you. All applications should be submitted to the Languages Across the Curriculum office as hardcopy or via email (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Some interviews will take place during the next few weeks. For more details you can call the LxC office at 607-777-2499, or email us: email@example.com
Contact for more information: LxC office at 607-777-2499
From Jan 2-23, 2013 faculty, staff, retirees and students can enjoy FitSpace, group fitness classes, open recreation activities and special programs for free. Throughout the January intercession there will be FREE classes and programs especially designed for adult learners. There will be Spinning, Yoga, Zumba, Piloxing, Turbo Kick, and Bootcamp classes along with many special programs such as Hula for Beginners, Massage, Blood Pressure Screenings, a variety of FitSpace equipment orientations, fitness tips at our Instructor's Corner sessions and opportunities to develop a swim workout with professionals.
All programs are free for current faculty, staff, retirees and students with a valid University ID card. A detailed listing of Rec Center hours and special classes and programs are available online at play.binghamton.edu.
Happy New Year and we hope to see you at the Rec Center in January!
Some students may be asked by their banks to complete a W-8 BEN form if they are eligible to have their interest income exempted from federal tax.
If you receive such a form from your bank or other financial institution, and are an F or J student in the United States for five years or less (since 2008 or later) or a J faculty or scholar in the United States for two years or less (2011 or later) it is essential that you complete the form and return it by the date requested.
The bank is required to have a withholding document on file in order to determine how/if to report interest income to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and whether or not tax should be withheld on the amount. If the bank's records indicate that the account holder is a non-immigrant, they may mail a W-8 BEN to certify his or her foreign status. Therefore, if you have a bank account, the banking industry needs to have the W-8 BEN on file in order to show the IRS that, YES, interest income was paid on your account, but NO, it's not taxable, IF you are eligible to be considered as a non-resident for tax purposes.
Click here to learn more and for instructions on how to correctly complete form W-8 BEN and return it to your bank.
At the end of the month, many of you will receive in the mail annual statements from your bank or credit union, listing your 2012 interest earnings "for income tax purposes." Some of you who filed tax forms last year may receive new forms in the mail from both the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and New York State. By the end of January, those of you who were employed in the U.S. during 2012 will receive a Wage and Tax Statement for 2012, also known as a W-2 form.
What does all this mean, and what should you do with these forms?
What follows is an introduction to U.S. income tax basics:
ALL students in F and J status are required to file tax returns, even if you have earned no income in the United States. The ISSS will have both federal and state tax forms available in late January, and will provide information on how to complete the forms. Watch future issues of ISSS-BU News for details. During the next several weeks, the ISSS will be updating the Taxes section of the ISSS web site, http://www.binghamton.edu/isss/taxes/index.html
The ISSS provides free income tax compliance software, known as Glacier Tax Prep (formerly called CINTAX), to all international students, international faculty and scholars, and international alumni who are eligible to be considered as non-residents for tax purposes (see the next paragraph for information on what qualifies someone to be a non-resident. Glacier Tax Prep provides an easy to use web interface for entering information regarding your income tax liability, and then enters the information onto the required forms so that you can print them. Glacier Tax Prep is password-protected so that only you have access to the information. Do not attempt to complete your income tax forms using the e-filing options recommended by the Internal Revenue Service. It is not possible to e-file tax returns if you are a non-resident for tax purposes. Information about how to access and use Glacier Tax Prep will be announced in January.
International students in F or J status for 5 years or less (since 2008 or later) and their dependents, file tax forms as non-residents. Research scholars or faculty in J-1 status for 2 years or less (since 2011 or later) also file as non-residents.
If you did not earn any U.S. income during 2012 other than bank or credit union interest, then you need only file form 8843, Statement for Exempt Individuals and Individuals with a Medical Condition. The purpose of the 8843 is to verify that the non-resident qualifies to exempt days of presence, and thus shields the non-resident from being taxed as a resident. Being taxed as a U.S. resident allows the IRS to tax your world-wide income.
The deadline for filing tax forms is April 15, 2013. International students who have been in for F or J status for more than 5 years, research scholars and faculty who have been in J-1 status for more than 2 years, or those who are in other non- immigrant statuses, are generally eligible to file as residents for tax purposes, and must use different forms.
International Student and Scholar Services staff are neither qualified nor permitted to give individual tax advice. Students with complicated tax situations may wish to consult with a tax preparation service, professional tax accountant, or tax attorney who is knowledgeable about nonresident tax law.
Student Records remind s students to confirm their enrollment for winter 2013 courses – a requirement for ALL undergraduate and graduate students. Note: This is the first time confirmation of enrollment is required for Winter Session courses. If students do not confirm enrollment for Winter Session 2013 via BU BRAIN by Friday, Jan. 4, 2013, they will be dropped from their courses.
New students will soon arrive to begin their studies for the Spring 2013 semester. If you are assisting a new student, be sure to bring him or her to the Office of International Student and Scholar Services beginning Wednesday, January 2 so that ISSS can give the student early arrival information. ISSS business hours from January 2, 2013 through January 18, 2013, are weekdays from 9:30am to 3:45pm, except Wednesdays, when the office is open from 11:30am to 3:45pm. The ISSS will return to its regular academic year office hours on Tuesday, January 22, 2013.
Orientation activities begin Wednesday, January 23, and orientation packets will be distributed during orientation check-in, Wednesday January 23 from 7:00am to 9:00am in University Union Old Union Hall. The orientation program schedule will be available after January 11. Once ready, it will be able to be viewed on the ISSS homepage: http://isss-new.binghamton.edu
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