International Student Responsibilities-Office of International Education - Carnegie Mellon University

Friday, August 31, 2007

International Student Responsibilities

August 31, 2007


Welcome New & Returning International Students!

The Office of International Education reminds you of some important responsibilities you have as international students in the United States.  Read this message carefully.  Details on all of the following issues are available on the OIE web site at:

Understand your immigration status and know what you may do, what you may not do, and what you are REQUIRED to do while in the U.S.  Know which documents you need to have, how to keep them current, and when and why they may need to be updated. All of this information can be found at

Allow sufficient time for requests for signatures or documents from OIE, other campus offices, the Department of Homeland Security or other organizations.  OIE requires 3 business days to process requests for signatures and 5 business days for new documents.

F-1 and J-1 students are required to be enrolled full time each semester in order to maintain status.  If you are considering dropping below full time, you must consult with your OIE advisor first in order to determine if you are eligible for reduced course load authorization.  Failure to do so will result in the loss of your legal status.  If eligible, you will need to provide a completed Reduced Course Load authorization form to OIE.  The form is available at:

You must update your address information with the HUB student information on line within 10 days of moving to a new address.  This may be done through the Student Information On-Line (SIO) web site at

*For all international students, the PERMANENT ADDRESS fields must be completed with an address in your home country (NOT a U.S. address). 

*International students living off campus must provide their US residential address in the OFF CAMPUS ADDRESS fields.

Please log on to SIO and confirm that your information is current.    

There are limits to the type and the amount of employment you may have while in the U.S.  F-1 and J-1 students may work on campus for Carnegie Mellon University part-time (20 hours or fewer per week) while classes are in session and full-time during official school breaks or annual vacations.  J-1 students need a letter from their program sponsor before beginning on campus employment.

All F-1 and J-1 students must visit OIE and receive authorization before beginning ANY type off-campus employment.  Visit for details on off-campus employment options.  Since some types of work authorization can take months to receive, plan ahead!

Know before you go!  If you are traveling internationally and will need to return to the U.S. to resume your studies, be sure to have all documents necessary to re-enter the U.S.  If you are traveling to a country that is not your home country, you must contact that country's embassy or consulate to find out what documentation is required to go there.  More detailed information is available at   

All international students in the U.S. are required to file a tax return with the Internal Revenue Service by mid-April of every year whether or not they earned income in the U.S.  In February and March, OIE will send email updates and offer information sessions and volunteer assistance with your tax returns.  Take advantage of these services when they are offered.

If you have questions or situations not covered by our website or office handouts, contact our office by phone at 412-268-5231 or email at  For more complex questions or problems, schedule an appointment with an advisor by calling 412-268-5231.  For emergency situations, call or visit the office - DO NOT SEND EMAIL.  Please be sure to address correspondence to the appropriate advisor:

NESLIHAN OZDOGANLAR, Foreign Student and Scholar Advisor to CIT, Architecture

LINDA GENTILE, Foreign Student and Scholar Advisor to Music, Drama, Heinz, SCS

JENNIFER MCNABB, Foreign Student and Scholar Advisor to Art, Design Tepper, MCS, H&SS

We wish you all the best during your time at Carnegie Mellon.  Please do not hesitate to contact us with any questions or concerns and make sure to check our website for OIE’s Fall 2007 Calendar of Events at

OIE Staff

Updated 10/3/2007