Immigration News

Special Student Relief Employment Benefits 

On April 18, 2022, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) posted Federal Register Notices announcing the suspension of certain regulatory requirements for F-1 nonimmigrant students from Ukraine who are experiencing severe economic hardship as a result of emergent circumstances in their country of citizenship.

These notices temporarily suspend applicable on-campus and off-campus employment regulations for eligible Ukrainian students. DHS will continue to monitor the situation in Ukraine and will announce any additional modifications or extensions to these notices in the Federal Register.

These notices apply exclusively to F-1 nonimmigrant students who meet all of the following conditions:

  • Are citizens of Ukraine or Sudan regardless of country of birth (or individuals having no nationality who last habitually resided in Ukraine or Sudan);
  • Are lawfully present in the United States in an F-1 nonimmigrant status on April 19, 2022;
  • Are enrolled in a Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP)-certified school;
  • Are currently maintaining F-1 nonimmigrant status; and
  • Are experiencing severe economic hardship as a direct result of the ongoing armed conflict in Ukraine and current crisis in Sudan.

The suspension of these requirements will remain in effect until Oct. 19, 2023, for Ukrainian and Sudanese students.

Please refer to the Ukraine Federal Register Notice for more information regarding:

  • The specific Special Student Relief (SSR) action effective with these notices;
  • Who is covered by these SSR actions;
  • Why DHS took these SSR actions; and
  • How to apply for employment authorization under these SSR actions.

For more information about SSR and when eligible students may apply, please view the What is Special Student Relief? infographic in the Study in the States Resource Library. If you have case-specific questions, please contact the SEVP Response Center at 703-603-3400 or 800-892-4829, Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. ET, except federal holidays.

Read more about this benefit HERE

REFUGEE STATUS IN POLAND

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Please access this link below to learn about refugee status in Poland that you may communicate to your families back home. https://pl.usembassy.gov/visas/humanitarian-assistance-and-visa-information-for-ukrainians/   

 About Department of State visa services in the Ukraine:

  • Due to exceptional circumstances, we are currently unable to provide visa services in Ukraine. This includes related support services such as visa appointment scheduling, as well as courier and fee collection services.
  • Applicants for U.S. nonimmigrant visas may apply in any country in which they are physically present and where there are appointments available. As each U.S. Embassy and Consulate has specific application procedures, you should contact the U.S. Embassy where you wish to apply directly.
  • Do not hesitate to reach out to us and continue to check our website for updates and additional information.

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 USCIS designates Ukraine  for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for 18 Months

What is TPS?

Access these links to learn more about this  benefit/process and follow instructions to file.

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If You Are In Need Of Financial Support 

If you are currently in need of emergency assistance, you may email eaid@fiu.edu

FIU Events and Related Resources

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Food Pantry: The pantry is available to all currently enrolled students. No proof of need is required and students can access the pantry once a week taking up to 10 pounds of food each visit at the following distribution locations:

Modesto Maidique Campus Pantry
Location: GC 319
Phone: 305-348-6995 or 305-348-3204

BBC Campus Pantry
Location: WUC 256
Hours:

The purpose of the food pantries is to serve FIU students in need. The pantries are available to students on both campuses. Both are run by the Center for Leadership & Service. The pantries are donations based, which means that all the food distributed comes from donations made by staff, faculty, members of the community, and student groups.

Technology Needs: Students may request laptops and wifi hotspots from the FIU Libraries. If you need a laptop, https://library.fiu.edu and click "devices" on the home page or go to https://library.fiu.edu/DeviceCheckout.

Need more guidance? If you need to connect with additional campus resources due to ongoing hardship or concerns, please reach out to the Dean of Students Office. You can call 305-348-3396 or e-mail dos@fiu.edu to get in touch with someone from their team. For more information about the Dean of Students Office, please visit PanthersCare.fiu.edu.

External Resources

How Floridians can help the people of Ukraine

Resources provided by Local 10 News to help those affected by this war.

Ukranian Dancers of Miami

Food Banks 

Near MMC:

  • Love and Faith Foundation - Food Distribution Center
    Address: 2097 SW 67th Ave, Miami, FL 33155
    Phone: (305) 527-0989
  • Miami Beth-el Nazarene - Food Distribution Center
    Address: 2800 SW 102nd Ave, Miami, FL 33165
    Phone: (305) 554-8000
  • First Baptist Church of Coral Park - Food Distribution Center
    Address: 8755 SW 16th St, Miami, FL 33165
    Phone: (305) 559-0241
  • Verbo Community Outreach - Food Distribution Center
    Address: 7320 NW 8th St, Miami, FL 33126
    Phone: (305) 261-5505

Near BBC:

  • Nourishing Souls Food Bank
    Address: 1306 NE 123rd St, North Miami, FL 33161
  • Good News Food Pantry - Food Distribution Center
    Address: 249 NE 166th St, Miami, FL 33162
    South Florida Urban Ministries - Food Distribution Center
    Address: 11500 NW 12th Ave, Miami, FL 33150
    Phone: (305) 442-8306
  • Miami Gardens Food Pantry - Food Distribution Center
    Address: 18041 NW 22nd Ave, Miami Gardens, FL 33056
    Phone: (305) 610-4004

Messages 

Below are several emails that have been sent to FIU international students.

  • March 7, 2022 - Temporary Protective Status Information Session-This Thursday!

    Dear International Students from Ukraine,

    Hello from the ISSS Office.

    Temporary Protective Status for Ukrainian Students

    Ukraine was designated for Temporary Protective Status (TPS) by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).  TPS provides protection from deportation and employment authorization for Ukrainians currently in the United States. Read more here:

    Secretary Mayorkas Designates Ukraine for Temporary Protected Status for 18 Months

    Attend this TPS Information Session this Thursday!

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    Once again, do not hesitate to reach out to us and continue to check our website for updates and additional information.

    ISSS Contact Information:

    Telephone: 305-348-2421 (24/7)

    Virtual Office, Monday-Friday 10 a.m. - noon and 3-4 p.m.

    Email:isss@fiu.edu

    Office Locations: SASC 230 (MMC)/WUC 363 (BBC)

    ISSS Website: Resources and updates-Ukraine-Russia Conflict

    We are thinking of all of you.

  • March 2, 2022 - Support for our Ukrainian students, faculty and staff and all those affected

    Support for our Ukrainian students, faculty and staff and all those affected (Sent March 2, 2022) 

    Dear members of the university community,

     The free world is watching with great pain and consternation as Russian military forces continue to attack Ukraine. The loss of life and the destruction of cities and towns at the hands of the Russian military, as well as the displacement of innocent Ukrainians due to this conflict, are unacceptable and heartbreaking.

    At FIU, we stand in solidarity with the people of Ukraine as they valiantly fight for peace and democracy in their homeland, and with all those who find themselves entangled in this crisis because of the actions of the Russian government. We also strongly condemn Russia’s senseless and unacceptable actions, which have troubling and far-reaching implications in Ukraine and across the globe.

    We understand that for many of our students who hail from Ukraine and nearby countries – and for faculty and staff members with ties to the region - these are very difficult times. Their families back home are in grave danger – some fear losing their lives, their jobs, their homes. This crisis has also brought on significant economic hurdles for our students. At FIU, we are taking proactive steps to communicate directly with those who are impacted to ensure they get the assistance they need. Students who are negatively impacted by these tragic circumstances and are in financial need should email eaid@fiu.edu.

    In addition, we are providing opportunities for students, faculty and staff impacted by this crisis to learn about the situation and its potential ramifications, express their worries and obtain the support that they need. Today, FIU Global Learning and the Sigma Iota Rho Honors Society hosted Urgent Dialogue: Russian Invasion of Ukraine. We will share details about additional events and conversations in the coming days.

    If you find yourself in need of support, please reach out. FIU Student Health & Wellness offers several avenues of support, including our Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS), which can be reached at 305-348-2277, and the FIU Panthers Care team. Faculty and staff may call the Office of Employee Assistance (OEA) at 305-348-2469 or email at oea@fiu.edu.

    As we continue to provide support to our university community, I believe it is also important that, as an institution of higher education, we embrace our responsibility to educate our students and our community about issues of global impact. Moments in history like the current war give us an opportunity to reflect on the ideals of freedom and democracy, and on the role that each of us plays in ensuring they prevail.

    Sincerely,

    Kenneth A. Jessell

    Interim President

  • February 28,2022 - Support for our Students and Scholars- A Financial Resource and Food Pantry Information

    Support for our Students and Scholars- A Financial Resource and Food Pantry Information (Sent February 28,2022)

    Dear International Students and Scholars from the Affected Area of Conflict in Eastern Europe,

    We have good news for you and we hope this helps mitigate your concerns and your needs. Please see this message from the Office of Scholarships at FIU:

    *****************************************

    If you are currently in need of emergency assistance, you may apply for emergency funds through the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF). To apply for these funds visit https://go.fiu.edu/eaidrequest

    The team of the Office of Scholarships will review your request and reach back to you within 7 business days. For questions or concerns, contact the Office of Scholarships directly, they are the ones handling this process and the funding. Contact Information:

    Janelle Fraga

    jfraga@fiu.edu

    Emergency Aid Relief Specialist

    Office of Scholarships

     

    ADDITIONAL RESOURCES:

    For additional resources, please review below:

    Food Pantry: The pantry is available to all currently enrolled students. No proof of need is required and students can access the pantry once a week taking up to 10 pounds of food each visit at the following distribution locations:

    Modesto Maidique Campus Pantry
    Location: GC 319
    Phone: 305-348-6995 or 305-348-3204

    BBC Campus Pantry
    Location: WUC 256

    The purpose of the food pantries is to serve FIU students in need. The pantries are available to students on both campuses. Both are run by the Center for Leadership & Service. The pantries are donations based, which means that all the food distributed comes from donations made by staff, faculty, members of the community, and student groups.

    Technology Needs: Students may request laptops and wifi hotspots from the FIU Libraries. If you need a laptop, https://library.fiu.edu and click "devices" on the home page or go to https://library.fiu.edu/DeviceCheckout.

    Need more guidance? If you need to connect with additional campus resources due to ongoing hardship or concerns, please reach out to the Dean of Students Office. You can call 305-348-3396 or e-mail dos@fiu.edu to get in touch with someone from their team. For more information about the Dean of Students Office, please visit PanthersCare.fiu.edu.

    ****************************************************

    Our dear students, we wish you the best, and please stay in touch. We will continue to inform all of you of the resources that may become available as the days go by.

    Best, 

    ISSS Team 

  • February 28, 2022 - A Message from ISSS-Support for our Students and Scholars

    A Message from ISSS-Support for our Students and Scholars (Sent  February 28, 2022) 

    Dear FIU International Students suffering from the Conflict in Eastern Europe,

    As the Executive Director of the FIU Global Mobility Office, and on behalf of the whole ISSS Team, I wanted to reach out to you and offer our genuine and heartfelt support in light of the unfortunate and challenging events that are taking place in Eastern Europe.

    We realize that there might be a chance that you, your family members, friends, or acquaintances may have been directly or indirectly impacted by this situation, and we want to remind you that our team is here to help you navigate these troubling times. We hope that by doing this together, we can at least alleviate the sense of helplessness that we all feel in the face of these unfortunate events that many times are so beyond our control. Please feel free to call us or come and visit our office if you need to speak with on one us.

    Also please know that FIU provides support to the whole community in times of distress through its Counseling Center, so feel free to reach out to them too if you feel you need to speak with one of their counselors. They can be reached by phone at 305-348-2277 or you can visit their website.

    We are at the moment trying to ascertain the best ways to provide the support that you may need in light of the difficulties in your countries or here in the United States, and please rest assured that we will keep you informed at all times on the resources that we may be able to make available to you.

    Please remain calm and patient as we navigate this situation together.

    ISSS Contact Information:

    Telephone: 305-348-2421 (24/7)

    Virtual Office, Monday to Friday 10-12 noon and 3:00 to 4:00 pm (https://go.fiu.edu/virtualoffice)-

    Email:isss@fiu.edu

    Office Location: SASC 230

    Best, 

    Dr. Parra 

  • February 24, 2022 - Support for those affected by Russian invasion of Ukraine

    Support for those affected by Russian invasion of Ukraine (Sent February 24, 2022)

    Dear members of the university community:

     On Thursday morning, the Russian military launched an invasion of Ukraine. Members of the university community who feel impacted by this crisis should know that resources are available to help.   

    Students may reach out to FIU’s Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS), 305-348-2277. Additional resources are available through FIU Panthers Care.

    Faculty and staff may call the Office of Employee Assistance (OEA) at 305-348-2469 or email at oea@fiu.edu.

    The Office of International Student and Scholar Services will communicate directly with students from the impacted area, as additional guidance becomes available.

    Please do not hesitate to reach out if you need help. At FIU, our priority is our university community’s well-being, especially during difficult times.