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Current ISO Student News

Issue 7: November 30, 2018



Table of Contents

  1. Season's Greetings and ISO Holiday Hours (more)
  2. End of Term Checks: Are Your Immigration Documents Accurate? (more)
  3. Prepare Your Documents for Travel this Winter (more)
  4. Winter Break University Hours and Services (more)
  5. Campus Focus: Screening & Panel Discussion of Maineland, a Film by Miao Wang (more)



Season's Greetings and ISO Holiday Hours 

Happy Holidays from the ISO!! Another year is almost gone, with perhaps only a few papers or exams left. We hope you are looking forward to the upcoming break from your studies and some time to share with friends and family. The staff of the ISO would like to extend warm wishes for a happy and successful new year. We truly enjoy working with the international community at UR all year round!

The ISO will maintain normal office hours (8:30 AM to 4:30 PM with Walk-Ins from 1:30 PM to 4:30 PM - Monday to Friday) at 40 Celebration Dr. (College Town), for most of the winter break period. During the winter holidays, we will have the following modified hours:

Wednesday, December 13 - College Town: 8:30 AM to 11:00AM & 1:30 PM to 4:30 PM
Monday, December 24 - College Town: 8:30 AM to 2:00 PM; Walk-Ins 12:00 PM to 2:00 PM
Tuesday, December 25 – All ISO Locations: CLOSED for UR Holiday
Wednesday, December 26 to Monday, December 31 -  College Town: 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM; Walk-Ins 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM
Tuesday, January 1 – All ISO Locations: Closed for UR Holiday
Wednesday, January 2 – College Town: Normal business hours resume

There will be no ISO Satellite Hours at neither the Eastman School of Music nor River Campus in 213 Morey Hall during Winter Break from Friday, December 14 but will resume on Tuesday, January 15.

Please do not leave your immigration questions or processing until the last minute!! The ISO will have fewer staff available during some periods and may require additional time to assist you with program extensions, work authorizations, travel, etc. 

In cases of emergencies, an ISO staff member can be reached even when the office is closed. If you encounter travel difficulties at a US border or potential immigration complications from a personal or medical situation, you are welcome to contact UR Public Safety at +1 585-275-3333 and ask for an ISO Advisor to return your call. However, please understand that requests for travel signatures and other documentation needs cannot be accommodated when the office is closed. These are NOT viewed as emergencies and be handled when the office is open during posted business hours. Please plan accordingly.

ISO Student News will also be taking a vacation this holiday season! This will be our last ISO Student Newsletter for 2018. Bi-weekly newsletters will resume mid-January 2019.  


End of Term Checks: Are Your Immigration Documents Accurate?

This is an excellent time of year to check your immigration documents for accuracy! Please make sure that your passport will remain valid through at least your next 6 months in the United States, or take steps to renew or replace it. Similarly, please verify the completion date listed on your I-20 or DS-2019. If you will need more time to finish your studies, for example, you must request a Program Extension before the current completion date passes. If you are finishing your program earlier than expected, you should request ISO to shorten your program end date and consider whether you want to apply for available F-1 or J-1 work permissions.

If your I-20 or DS-2019 requires a change, you must get an updated document from ISO before you leave for the semester. Such changes may include a change in your official major, an extended completion date, updated funding, or changes in your personal or dependent information. If you intend to travel this winter, your I-20 or DS-2019 must match your SEVIS record and it can be very difficult to obtain an updated document while you are traveling.

All forms and more information is available on our website. If you would like to discuss your plans with an advisor, you may contact ISO to schedule an appointment. To schedule an appointment, please email ( or call ISO (+1 585-275-2866).


Prepare Your Documents for Travel this Winter

As a reminder, all students should have an up-to-date F-1 travel signature or J-1 validation signature before traveling overseas. If you still need to update your I-20 or DS-2019 signature, please be sure to visit ISO during business hours to renew it. To renew your US visa stamp during the winter break, please make an appointment with the local consulate as early as possible. If you anticipate Security Clearance processing during the visa application, you should also prepare in advance for potential delays and ask your department for a letter of support. Most clearances are processed within 3 to 4 weeks. You should carry your original immigration documents with you whenever you travel, even within the United States. These include your I-20 or DS-2019, passport, and valid I-94 record. More information is available online.


Winter Break University Hours and Services

Many offices and campus services will be closed or have limited hours during the winter break, which is 12/21/2018 to 1/12/2019 for most UR academic programs. Be sure to check the University's Winter Break page for modified schedules of various services such Dining and Transportation if you will need to access those services during this time. Also, there is a UR Breaks Facebook page, which you can "Like" to get updates about new winter break programs planned and to connect with other students staying on-campus during the break!

*If you are an undergraduate student planning to stay on River Campus during the break, please be sure to register! More information is available here, and registration is required by 12/17/2018. 

During the break, you will still be able to contact Campus Security at any time (on-campus: x13 in an emergency or x5333; off-campus: +1 585-275-3333).


Campus Focus: Screening & Panel Discussion of Maineland, a Film by Miao Wang

Screening & Panel Discussion of Maineland, a Film by Miao Wang

Thursday, December 6 – 6:00 PM
1101 Dewey Hall, River Campus

Come participate in a film screening of Maineland, a film by Miao Wang described as “A fascinating glimpse into the lives of an expanding population of immigrant students” by TheAustin Chronicle. The film will then be followed by a panel discussion with Chinese students from the University of Rochester on life and education in the US. This event is made possible with support from the National Committee on US-China Relations’ Public Intellectuals Program, which is funded by the Carnegie Corporation of New York. Food and beverages will be provided. Questions? Please email Dr. Osburg at


Editor: Molly Murray, Immigration Advisor