Teachers College has a long history of welcoming international students, scholars, and faculty to our academic and social community. Currently, approximately 1300 students from over 65 countries are enrolled at all degree levels and in every department. The Office of International Students and Scholars (OISS) is committed to providing services and programs that support the growth, development, and welfare of international students and scholars on multiple levels, including immigration regulatory advising and processing, cultural adjustment, social enrichment, and assistance with practical matters related to living in the U.S. The OISS also acts as a center for cultural and educational programming that advances cross-cultural understanding and interaction between U.S. and international students and scholars and promotes cultural competency across the College.
The OISS staff also assists students in contacting campus and community resources when appropriate. In addition, the office provides visa and orientation services for international visiting scholars, resources for delegations of international visitors and assistance to the college community on international issues.
The OISS website also provides information to prospective, incoming and current students on visas and immigration matters, financial aid, employment, and community connections. Students are encouraged to comunicate with OISS staff members via email or by stopping by the office in L5 Whittier Hall.
In addition to orientation sessions, informational meetings are scheduled for all international students to learn more about their rights and responsibilities for maintaining student status. Information on immigration procedures is also available from the OISS and on their website. Knowledgeable OISS staff members help students understand the requirements and benefits of nonimmigrant student status, as well as process the necessary forms. The OISS is the office responsible for certifying international students’ eligibility for on-campus and off-campus employment, and for compliance with the international student/scholar tracking system (SEVIS), as required by US government regulations.
During “income tax season” (February to April), TC international students who are “nonresident aliens” for tax purposes are provided, free of charge, access to US federal tax return preparation software. The OISS staff is not able to answer tax questions, but they can direct students to helpful publications and information.
A variety of programs for international scholars, students, and all members of the TC community interested in intercultural engagement, are scheduled throughout the year.
In November of each year, International Education Week (IEW) is celebrated in the U.S. and around the world. Teachers College participates in IEW by highlighting the College’s long history of leadership in international educational exchange, development, and scholarship. Faculty, students, and visiting scholars are invited to share their international research projects in poster sessions, panel presentations, and other activities.
Each Spring, TC international students plan and host International Week. The entire TC community looks forward to this annual, week-long event. It provides everyone with the opportunity to experience TC’s global community. Presentations of food, music, dance, cinema, traditional artifacts and national dress from around the world allow the entire TC community to appreciate similarities and to celebrate diversity. International students are encouraged to host an event about their country or to join with others to present an activity of international interest.
Global Classroom, an international speakers’ network sponsored by One To World offers an on-campus workshop in the fall semester for New York-area international students who would like to share their cultures with American elementary, middle and high school students. Other popular One To World activities include community visits during American holidays, trips to cultural events, “campus to career” programs, walking tours of New York City, and an evening cruise around Manhattan. Complete information is available at www.one-to-world.org.
Also, the monthly schedule of events at International House is posted at www.ihouse-nyc.org.
At the beginning of the Fall and Spring semesters, new international students are required to attend New International Student Welcome Day. New students in F-1 and J-1 visa status are required to attend visa orientation sessions given by the OISS on US government regulations relating to their status as well as immigration benefits, including employment. Additionally, students are required to attend one of the employment workshops. Employment Workshops are scheduled throughout the year to help continuing and graduating students take advantage of F-1 employment options.
Experienced, professional International Student Advisors are available to advise individual students regarding personal, financial, immigration, cultural, academic and other concerns. To meet with an advisor, appointments as well as walk-in hours are available. When it is appropriate, an advisor will assist the student in contacting other offices or professionals.
L5 Whittier Hall