A-2: Dependents of A-1 visa holders (employees of foreign governments who enter the United States on official business ). Dependents of A principals may study in the United States without additional permission, although employment is not possible unless the dependent is granted employment authorization by the USCIS.
ARO: Alternative Responsible Officer. A university official who assists the RO (Responsible Officer) with advising for J-1 Exchange Visitors. ARO responsibilities include creating and updating the records of J-1 Exchange Visitors (students and scholars) and otherwise carrying out the J-1 program.
B-1/B-2: Visa categories used primarily for visiting the U.S. for business or tourism. Non-immigrants holding B category visas may not enroll for a course of study. Learn more.
CBP: Customs and Border Protection.
Code of Federal Regulations (CFR): The regulations written by federal agencies to carry out laws enacted by the legislative branch. Regulations related to F-1 students and their dependents are in Title 8; Department of State regulations related to visas and to the Exchange Visitor Program are in Title 22.
CPT: Curricular Practical Training. The U.S. government offers international students (who are not normally allowed to work off-campus) the option of receiving payment for services rendered in fulfillment of a course requirement. The work must be related directly to a course that is a normal requirement for all students for the particular major field of study. No application to the government is required, but DSO approval must be given before the beginning of the paid employment. Learn more.
DHS: Department of Homeland Security
D/S: Duration of Status. Stamped on your I-94 and I-20 when you entered the U.S. through a POE. It means that you can remain in the U. S. legally for as long as you maintain your status.
DoS: Department of State. The Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at DoS has jurisdiction over all J-1 exchange programs.
DS-2019: Certificate of eligibility for J-1 Exchange Visitor status, prepared by the sponsoring agency, which shows program of study, dates of eligibility, financial information, etc. It is not the visa document.
DSO: Designated School Official. A person authorized by the USCIS to sign I-20s and give advice concerning F-1 non-immigrant status. There are ten DSOs at Emory: Scott Allen in Emory College Admissions and Tamika Hairston in Graduate Admissions; Stephanie Roberts, Terry Eiesland, Derek Baran, Rick Lane, Angela Guinyard, Kyla King, and James Kamonjoh in ISSS; and Jennifer Knupp and Christine Richardson at Oxford College.
EAD: Employment Authorization Document (also known as form I-766). This credit-card-size document is required for any off-campus employment by non-citizens (except CPT). It must be in possession of the non-citizen prior to the first day of actual employment. It can be issued to non-immigrant students for OPT, for economic hardship, and for employment by an international agency recognized by the U.S. government.
F-1: The majority of students at Emory are admitted to the United States in this student status and hold F-1 visa stamps in their passport. Learn more.
F-2: Non-immigrant status awarded to dependents (spouses and children) of full-time international students.
H-1B: A visa used by a temporary worker valid for up to six year (two three-year priods). You must have at least a bachelor’s degree to qualify, but typically will need a master’s or Ph.D. depending upon the relevant position. The visa is specific to a position. Application is made by the employer and not the individual. Application requires an approved Labor Condition Application from the Department of Labor with a favorable prevailing wage determination from the State Employment Service. This visa can take up to four months to obtain, though a premium processing option is available. Dependents of H1 visas holders on H4 visas are not eligible to work under any circumstances. Learn more.
I-20: Certificate of Eligibility for F-1 student status, prepared initially by the Emory College or Laney Graduate School Admission Office, which shows program of study, dates of eligibility, financial information, etc. It is not the visa document.
I-765: Application for Employment Authorization. This form is completed by international students who wish to be issued an EAD for one of the categories of off-campus employment other than CPT.
I-94: Hard copy or electronic record completed for the non-immigrant at the Port of Entry by the CBP inspector. The record will record the port and date of entry, the non-immigrant status in which the person was admitted to the country, and the date of termination of this status (either a specific date or "D/S"). Additional notations may be made.
ICE: Immigration and Customs Enforcement. The section of the Department of Homeland Security responsible for what was previously the INS enforcement division: investigations, detention, removal, and intelligence, as well as the new database of student information.
International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS): This office serves all international visitors to Emory University and is located in Suite 130 of the North Decatur Building.
J-1 status: Status granted to students or scholars who are on a sponsored Exchange Visitor Program, for example, Fulbright awardees; Emory University has been designated with its own Exchange Visitor Program, P-1-00874. Learn more.
J-2: Non-immigrant status awarded to dependents (spouses and children) of J-1 international students and scholars.
L-1: The L-1 category allows foreign companies to transfer executives and managers (L-1A) and technical workers possessing "specialized knowledge" (L-1B) to affiliates, branches, parents or subsidiaries in the United States. The primary visa holder can only study as an incident to his or her work in the United States. Dependents of L-1 visa holders are eligible for L-2 visas, and may study in the United States full- or part-time. An L-2 spouse may work only with an EAD card issued by USCIS, obtained by filing Form I-765. An L-2 dependent child cannot work.
LPR: Lawful Permanent Residence, also known as "green card."
OPT: Optional Practical Training. The U. S. government offers international students the opportunity to remain in the U. S. following completion of a program of study to work for up to one year gaining practical experience in their major field. International students must apply for OPT upon recommendation by a DSO. Learn more.
PDSO: Primary Designated School Official. Each government-approved school must choose one DSO who will be responsible for all the DSOs at the school, who will maintain the official government records for international students, and who is authorized to make changes in the DSO team.
POE: Ports of Entry. The "doorway" through which you entered the United States (usually an airport).
R-1: The R-1 classification applies to a religious worker. Dependents (spouses and unmarried children under 21 years of age) of R-1 workers are entitled to R-2 status with the same restrictions as the principal. Dependents may be students in the U.S., but may not be employed under the R-2 classification.
Responsible Officer or Alternate Responsible Officer: A person authorized by the DoS to sign DS-2019s and give advice concerning J-1 non-immigrant status. Lelia Crawford, the Director of ISSS, is the Responsible Officer for Emory; there are seven Alternate Responsible Officers also in the ISSS office: Terry Eiesland, Stephanie Roberts, Angela Guinyard, Derek Baran, Jimmy Kamonjoh, Rick Lane, and Joan Lindsey.
RFE: Request for Evidence. Sometimes received in response to an application submitted to USCIS for a privilege related to your status. You should pay special attention to the request. It will mention exactly what you need to send to support your application. It will also show a date by which the response must be received. You will want to discuss the RFE with a DSO.
SEVIS: The Student and Exchange Visitor Information System, designed by federal agencies to monitor certain aspects of the programs of F-1 students and J-1 Exchange Visitors in the United States.
Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP): A division of Immigrationa and Customs Enforcement that oversees nonimmigrant students and their dependents. It also houses the data of J-1 exchange visitors in the SEVIS database.
USCIS: United States Citizenship and Immigration Services. The unit of the Department of Homeland Security responsible for adjudicating applications for benefits filed by nonimmigrants.
Visa: The document affixed in a person's passport that allows that person to present him or herself to an immigration inspector at a U.S. port of entry to request the status for which the visa was issued (e.g., "F-1" or "J-1").