An electronic news service for international students and scholars, owned by the Office of International Student and Scholar Services atBinghamtonUniversity, State University of New York
Visit ISSS on the Web! http://isss.binghamton.edu
1. National Holidays in October
2. English Conversation Pairs: Non-native Speakers of English Wanted
3. International Student Grant-in-Aid Applications Due Wednesday, October 5
4. Next International Coffee Hour Friday, October 7
5. Registrar’s Office Announces Important Deadlines for Fall 2011
6. Make Connections and Make a Difference at Inaugural Showcase of Community Opportunities on October 5
7. Graduating in December? Planning to Apply for Practical Training? Now is the Time!
8. Scholarships for Female Students from Developing Countries
9. Do You Have Travel Plans for Thanksgiving or Intersession?
10. U.S. Diversity Visa (Green Card) Lottery 2013 Begins Tuesday, October 4 at Noon
11. How to Stay Safe From Stalking
12. New Support Group Forming for International and Internationally-minded Students
13. Healing and Grieving Support Group
14. Workshop for Undergraduates: How to Choose a Major on Wed. October 26
15. Christmas International House Now Accepting Applications
The following countries are celebrating national holidays during the month of October:
|St. Vincent and the Grenadines||27-Oct|
Last week the English Conversation Pairs program had a successful welcome meeting. We still have 35 native speakers of English who are looking for an international student partner. If you are interested in learning more about American culture and improving your conversational English consider joining this program. You would meet one hour per week at a time and location decided on with your partner for informal conversation. If you are interested please email Shannon Hilliker-VanStrander at email@example.com
Each semester, awards of up to $500 are made to a small number of international students who have a severe financial need. To be eligible, students must be in F-1 or J-1 status, have been in attendance at Binghamton University at least one year (began their studies at Binghamton University in Fall 2010 or earlier), document need, have no outstanding obligations to the university, and be full-time students in good standing.
Some students may find themselves in financial difficulty through no fault of their own. Examples can include reduced support from a sponsor, or unanticipated expenses. Applicants are strongly advised to carefully document their financial situation when submitting the application form, as there are always more students seeking assistance than there are funds.
Students with outstanding balances in their student account with the University should note that based on BU policy, any scholarship award will first be applied towards the balance on their student bill.
Applications are available now in the Office of International Student and Scholar Services and must be submitted no later than Wednesday, October 5, 2011.
Good company! Free refreshments! Celebrate the beginning of the Fall season by coming to this month's International Coffee Hour on Friday, October 7 from 3:30-5pm in the Mandela Room (note room change) of the University Union. This month's sponsor is The Watson School.
The 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 held on the first Friday of every month from 3:30pm-5pm. Each coffee hour has free hot and cold beverages and cookies, sponsored by a different department on campus.
5. Registrar’s Office Announces Important Deadlines For Fall 2011
The Registrar’s Office has posted important deadlines for the Fall 2011 Semester at:
Students who wish to withdraw from a course, change their grade option or apply for Fall 2011 graduation to complete the following steps by Friday, Oct. 28:
• Withdrawals: You may drop a class, but since the add/drop deadline has already passed, a “w” will appear on your transcript for the course grade when you withdraw. The deadline is 11:59 p.m. Friday, Oct. 28.
• Grade Option Changes: To have your grading option for a course changed (either from a letter grade to pass/fail or vice versa) you must print and complete the Grade Option Change form available at http://www2.binghamton.edu/registrar/students/course-registration/grade-option-change.html and drop it off at the Registrar’s Office in SW-109, between 9:30 a.m. and 5 p.m. by 4:45 p.m. Friday, Oct. 28.
• Application for Undergraduate Degree for Fall 2011: Undergraduate candidates planning to graduate this semester must submit this online form available at
by 11:59 p.m. Friday, Oct. 28.
6. Make Connections and Make a Difference at Inaugural Showcase of Community Opportunities on October 5
Binghamton University’s Center for Civic Engagement (CCE) will host the inaugural Showcase of Community Opportunities from 11a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday, October 5, in the University Union -Mandela Room. Students will be able to pick up information and learn about various internships, research projects and volunteer service opportunities on and off campus.
The showcase is expected to draw over 75 local nonprofit and community organizations for networking, collaboration and community engagement.
International students are reminded to consult with the ISSS employment team to determine if employment authorization is required for internships and activities off campus. You may email your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information, contact the CCE at 607-777-4287 or by email: email@example.com
Students in F-1 status who will be graduating in December and plan to apply for optional practical training (OPT) post graduation are reminded that it can take as long as three months to obtain their Employment Authorization Document (EAD card) from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Service Center. If you plan to begin employment as of January 2012 you should be submitting your paperwork as soon as possible. Application forms for optional practical training are available in the ISSS, or can be downloaded on line from:
Employment cannot begin until you receive your EAD card.
Questions about your OPT application? Do you want your application materials reviewed? Come to Employment Walk-In Appointments every Tuesday from 1:30pm to 3:15pm or email your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org .
Several organizations have announced scholarship grant competitions for students from developing countries for the 2012-13 academic year.
The Margaret McNamara Memorial Fund awards 6 to 10 non-renewable grants of $12,000 each year to women from specific developing countries (More than 130 countries in Africa, Europe, Asia, Central and South America and the Caribbean appear on their approved list). The Fund is administered by The World Bank Family Network. Applicants must have a record of service to women and/or children in her country, demonstrate financial need, plan to return to their home countries in about two years after receiving the grant, be currently residing in the United States, be in a valid non- immigrant status, be studying at a US accredited institution for the 2011-12 academic year and during the period of time covered by the grant, be at least 25 years old by December 31, 2011, and not be related to any World Bank group staff member or their spouse.
A copy of the list of all eligible developing countries for this Scholarship as well as application information are available now on the Margaret McNamara Memorial Fund web site. Visit http://www.mmmf-grants.org for full information and to obtain an application. The application deadline is January 17, 2012. Supporting documents must be sent by email to: email@example.com
Other sources of financial aid include:
1. American Association of University Women International Fellowships
2012-2013 deadline is December 1, 2011, applications are available now on their website:
The application is submitted on-line, supporting documents must be mailed.
AAUW Educational Foundation
301 ACT Drive
Iowa City, Iowa 52243-4030
telephone: 319-337-1716 ext. 60
Eligibility: women only, graduate students, citizen of any country except United States, admission to an accredited U.S. institution, outstanding academic record, professional potential, record of civic or community involvement concerning women, intent to return to home country, potential of the field of study to improve lives of women and girls in the country of origin. Up to 57 fellowships awarded.
2. PEO International Peace Scholarship Fund
Philanthropic and Educational Organization For Women
2012-2013 deadline is December 15, 2011 to submit eligibility form. The eligibility form is submitted on-line.
3700 Grand Avenue
Des Moines, Iowa 50312
http://www.peointernational.org/peo-projectsphilanthropies and scroll down to “International Peace Scholarship Fund.”
Additional information is available at:
Eligibility: women only, full-time candidates for MA or PhD at U.S. school, citizen of any country except U.S. and Canada, intention to return to home country upon completion of degree, additional financial support to cover remaining expenses. The maximum award is $10,000. You must complete the eligibility form well in advance of December 15 in order to be eligible to apply for the scholarship.
If you have travel plans for Thanksgiving or Intersession, whether within the United States or abroad, you’ll want to read the latest information on travel, published by the ISSS, at the following link:
The annual Diversity Visa lottery (DV) run by the U.S. Government begins Tuesday, October 4 at 12 Noon. This program makes available up to 50,000 permanent resident immigrant visas by random selection through an annual diversity visa lottery.
For complete information on the Diversity Visa Lottery, please see the article published in the September 19, 2011 edition of ISSS-BU News
Safety is our goal! So be careful what information you post on the internet. Did you know that 1 in 4 females and 1 in 5 males in some colleges are stalked or harassed? Use gender neutral user id’s and don’t post too much or very specific information to online places such as blogs and websites like Facebook, MySpace, etc.
University guidelines on harassment can be found at: http://www2.binghamton.edu/student-handbook/rules.pdf.
The University Counseling Center is located on the first floor of the Bartle Library Lobby, Room LN Room 1202. Telephone: 607-777-2772. http://www2.binghamton.edu/counseling/
This new group, called “Cultures and Conversations,” welcomes students who would like to discuss their experiences at Binghamton University as international students and who are looking forward to meeting new friends. It is a welcoming and inclusive group that aims to promote feelings of connection and belonging and welcome those who are “international at heart.”
The group will explore typical issues that international students encounter: homesickness, loneliness, academic stress, language and communication difficulties. Time and place for meetings will be announced, based on students’ schedules. For more information, call the University Counseling Center at 607-777-2772 or email Sefali Bhutwala at firstname.lastname@example.org
This support group for students who have lost a loved one is now accepting new members. This group provides a venue for sharing feelings, and helps individuals find meaning through sharing one’s story and receiving understanding from others. It is away you can support your own healing process as you come to terms with what you have experienced.
Call the University Counseling Center and ask for a group screening with Sefali Bhutwala, PhD.
If you have any questions about this group, or would like more information on bereavement, stop by the University Counseling Center (first floor, Bartle Library, LN 1202) or call 607-777-2772.
Are you an undergraduate student who is not sure about their major, or doesn’t know which major to select? The Career Development Center will conduct an interactive workshop on Wednesday October 26 from 4:00pm to 5:00pm in University Union West Room 325.
Christmas International House (CIH) is a Christian ministry, founded by the Presbyterian Church. CIH is based on friendship evangelism, peacemaking, hospitality, and believing that God loves all persons. Its ministry involves meeting student needs in terms of housing, food and interaction with others. It provides the opportunity for both students and hosts to gain a better understanding of people around the world. The program is open to students of all faiths, and is designed primarily for international students away from home for the first time, rather than for students who have been in the U.S. for several years.
CIH is an organization that offers a “home away from home” in private homes in many areas of the United States for two weeks at Christmas each year. The dates for this year’s Christmas International House are December 17, 2011 to January 2, 2012.
Applications will be accepted by mail beginning October 1, 2011 and will close November 20, 2011. Students who sign the application statement commit themselves to participate in all organized activities and stay the entire length of the program. Lodging and meals are provided for free by the hosts, transportation costs are the responsibility of the student.
A registration fee of $100.00 for singles ($125.00 for couples or families) is due with applications if postmarked before November 1. After that date, a fee of $150.00 for singles ($175.00 for couples or families) must accompany the application form. Please make checks or money orders payable to AMIS/Christmas International House (Cash is not accepted). This fee will be refunded only if you are not placed. If you are placed, there is NO refund.
For more information and to obtain an application, visit their website at http://www.christmasih.org
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Last Updated: 3/13/12