ISSS-BU NEWS FOR MONDAY, 03 OCTOBER 2016


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Contents

  1. Decker Student Health Services Offers An Additional Week of Clinics for TB Screening Tests
  2. Healthy Campus Summit: Wednesday, October 5
  3. Next International Coffee Hour: Friday, October 7
  4. Together: International Student Support Group
  5. Graduating Students: How to prepare your Optional Practical Training (OPT) Application
  6. Optional Practical Training (OPT) workshop
  7. Tobacco Use Assessment Survey Available
  8. Imagine Your Future - Chart Your Path - Distinguish Your Degree
  9. Are you working off campus? Be very careful, make sure you are working legally
  10. Don’t Become a Victim of a Phone Scam!

 

1. Decker Student Health Services Offers An Additional Week of Clinics for TB Screening Tests

New international students who have received their order from Decker Student Health Services to obtain a TB screening test now have an additional week of pre-scheduled clinics as a convenience to your busy schedule. The additional dates for the clinics are:

*Monday, October 3 through Friday, October7: 9:30am to 12:30pm
*Monday (10/3), Tuesday (10/4) Wednesday (10/5) and Friday (10/7): 1:30pm to 3:00pm

Please bring BOTH your order form and insurance card when you arrive for your TB screening test.

2. Healthy Campus Summit: Wednesday, October 5

Join the Healthy Campus Summit from 10:30am to 2pm Wednesday, Oct. 5, in the UU-Mandela Room and Old Union Hall. Learn about the impact a healthier campus can have on Binghamton University, its academics and you, personally and professionally.  Multiple sessions will cover topics on creating a culture of health, current health behaviors, research initiatives and employee wellness. 

Keynote by Megan Amaya, director of health promotion and wellness and assistant professor in practice at the College of Nursing at Ohio State University and the president-elect for the National Consortium for Building Health Academic Communities.

Find details and the schedule for the free summit online.

3. Next International Coffee Hour: Friday, October 7

Good company! Complementary refreshments! Relax by coming to this month's International Coffee Hour from 3:30-5 p.m. Friday, October 7, in Old Union Hall. This month's sponsor is the Office of Residential Life. October Coffee Hour participants will have the opportunity to learn more about the sponsor while mingling with both international and domestic students.

International Coffee Hour strives to be a space where the entire Binghamton University community, including international students, U.S. students, faculty/staff and community members are welcome. The coffee hours are informal and provide an opportunity to meet and learn more about each other in a relaxed atmosphere. They are usually held from 3:30-5 p.m. on the first Friday of every month during the academic year. All are welcome!

If you have any questions about International Coffee Hour, contact Linda Torricelli, ISSS programming coordinator.

4. Together: International Student Support Group

Discussion facilitator: Dr. Sangmoon Kim, staff psychologist at University Counseling Center
When: Tuesdays, 3:30-5:00p.m.
Where: ISSS Conference room, LSG 552 (Ground floor of Bartle Library building)

Hello international students at Binghamton University! You are warmly invited to the Together: International Student Support Group. You will meet fellow international students. Together aims to promote international students’ social interaction and sense of belonging as well as academic success. You can practice and enhance your English skills. We will meet most Tuesdays; our next meeting is Tuesday, October 11, 2016. Weekly attendance is not required but recommended.  If you have any question about the Together, please email Dr. Sangmoon Kim.

5. Graduating Students: How to prepare your Optional Practical Training (OPT) Application

The workshop, How to Prepare Your Optional Practical Training (OPT) Application, is recommended for international students who are graduating in December 2016. As a December 2016 graduate, you can apply for OPT authorization now.  Participants will learn how to:

*Prepare and complete all documents needed to apply to USCIS for OPT authorization
*Understand the two-step application process
*Learn how to pick an appropriate OPT start date

To better prepare for this workshop, review this OPT checklist prior to participation. The conference room door will shut at the start of this presentation.  As a courtesy to other participants, please arrive on time.   Event dates, times and locations can be found below.

 

  Workshop:
  How to Prepare Your Optional Practical Training (OPT) Application

  Date

 Time

 Location

 Tuesday, October 11 2016

 1:15pm to 1:45pm

All workshops will be held in LSG552 (Library South, Ground Floor,  Room 552)

 Wednesday, October 19  2016

 10:50am to 11:20am

 

Please note that space is limited. To attend this event, register on B-Engaged.  You can register by clicking the blue button on the right side of the B-Engaged Event webpage that says: RSVP TO EVENT.  If you have any questions about this workshop or registration, please contact Linda Torricelli, ISSS programming coordinator.

6. Optional Practical Training (OPT) workshop

You are cordially invited to join the Office of International Student and Scholar Services and staff from the Fleishman Center for Career and Professional Development to learn about OPT!  Applying for OPT authorization can be complicated and figuring out visa status issues after graduating can be confusing. After this workshop, you will know general information regarding OPT, the kinds of employment allowed while on OPT and the regulations that govern you while on OPT authorization.

This workshop will take place on Thursday, October 20 from 3:45pm to 5:00pm in UU133AThis workshop is open to all international students. Please note that space is limited. To attend, register on B-Engaged. (Click on the blue button, on the right side of the B-Engaged event webpage, that says: RSVP to event.)  Access the B-Engaged event webpage here.

Questions? Contact the ISSS at intlwork@binghamton.edu.

7. Tobacco Use Assessment Survey Available

Binghamton University is preparing to become tobacco free in August 2017. As part of the University's broader health initiatives, approximately 7,700 faculty, staff and students have been selected to complete a short survey (2-3 minutes) to assess the use of tobacco on campus. Those who complete the survey by October 15 have the chance to win a $25 Visa gift card.  If you do not receive an invitation to participate, you may still do so online.  Should you have questions about the survey, you can send an e-mail.

8. Imagine Your Future - Chart Your Path - Distinguish Your Degree

Undergraduate international students: Did you know that the university offers a specialized minor just for international and study abroad students? The Global Studies Minor (GSM) is multi-disciplinary program where you can investigate your cross-cultural experiences and better understand international, regional, and global issues.  Specifically, GSM courses foster a self-critical perspective on intercultural experience; promote students' reflective-analysis so they may better understand their own cultural values and behaviors, and the various ways these may be interpreted by members of other cultures; connect students intercultural experiences to their academic area of expertise; and encourage investigation into the ways scholarship has been used to achieve understandings of international, regional and global issues.

Make the most of your cross-cultural, multi-lingual, and international experiences, by declaring the GSM!  Contact glst@binghamton.edu for additional information or to set up a quick consultation.

9. IMPORTANT ALERT! Are you working off campus? Be very careful, make sure you are working legally.

The majority of Binghamton University international students understand the federal immigration regulations and only work when they have authorization to work. Regulations are strict and must be obeyed.

A student might wonder if US immigration can find out if they are working without permission at a restaurant or store. The short answer is, yes, so DO NOT do it! The SEVIS database that records your entry to the United States is interfaced with the Social Security Administration, Department of Motor Vehicles, and Internal Revenue Service. There are many misconceptions about hiding employment, be sure your information is coming from a reliable source such as the ISSS or Study in the States. Working illegally has severe personal consequences for anyone who is caught. It is a truly serious violation of your visa status!

What can happen? Any unauthorized employment is a violation of your F-1 status. It is serious and potentially a deportable offense. Even if you are being paid in cash with no record of your employment or earnings, you are working illegally. If you are working illegally, stop doing so immediately!

Remember for serious immigration issues, your friends and internet blogs are not the best source of information. You need to be working with an ISSS advisor when you have questions. If you are unsure what the regulations are that govern your status and what is allowed for employment for F or J status, please ask your questions to the ISSS Office. We want you to know about the employment benefits available to you in your status. You can meet with an ISSS advisor, or email us at intlwork@binghamton.edu. You can also easily find this information on the ISSS website or the Study in the States website.

You have worked very hard to come to the United States to study. Do not risk all the time and money you have invested in that goal. Obeying the regulations that govern your visa status is your personal responsibility. If you have questions be sure to contact the ISSS or come to Advising Walk-In Hours. 

10. Don’t Become a Victim of a Phone Scam!

Recently we became aware that Binghamton University international students have received phone calls from someone claiming to be from the IRS or from U.S. Immigration.  The students were told that there was a criminal issue against their social security number, or a visa status issue, or that laws had been violated, and then they were asked for personal information and/or payment.  Please beware and DO NOT FALL VICTIM TO THIS SCAM!

If contacted via phone, you should immediately be suspicious.  Ask for the person's full name, agency, and reporting office, and for a government telephone number to call the person back.   They will probably tell you that your only opportunity is at the time of the call and that you have to take action now.  Don’t believe them.  Never release personal information over the phone, and be aware that a government agency would never go about any formal proceedings with a phone call.  Should you ever get any requests in print, please bring them to ISSS immediately and we will review them and advise accordingly. 

USCIS and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) want to stop scams about income tax payments or immigration violations. You will not get in any trouble for reporting a scam.  Additional information about common scams and about how to report such scams can be found on the USCIS Website and on the IRS website (common scams link and the reporting scams link).

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Last Updated: 10/4/16