Tuesday, July 7, 2015

PIER Newsletter : June 24, 2015

In This Issue:
PIER Chair Announcements
PIER Announcement

PIER Chair Announcements

Dear PIER Members,

It was a pleasure seeing you at the PIER meeting June 17 at the University of San Diego. PIER will distribute the meeting minutes within a month of the meeting date, thank you for your patience. Below are some important updates.

Visa Systems Issue
The Department of State’s Bureau of Consular Affairs is currently experiencing technical problems with its visa systems. This issue is not specific to any particular country or visa category. Applicants should refer to the most up to date information on the U.S. Consulate website. Schools report that the DOS is sending applicants with pending visa issuance an email explaining the current situation and their options. You can find the notice here http://travel.state.gov/content/travel/english/news/technological-systems-issue.html.

USCIS Updates
USCIS discontinues Electronic form I-539, form I-526 and regional center document library. On June 15, 2015, USCIS stopped accepting electronically filed Forms I-539, Application to Extend/Change Nonimmigrant Status, and Forms I-526, Immigrant Petition by Alien Entrepreneur. USCIS also discontinued the Regional Center Document Library.
You can find the notice here http://www.uscis.gov/news/alerts/uscis-discontinues-electronic-form-i-539-form-i-526-and-regional-center-document-library.

SEVP Updates
1. Starting, June 12, 2015, the Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) changed the time frame for when it accepts a designated school official’s (DSO) “Requests for Correction to Student Status.” Now, DSOs can submit a request to change an F-1 student’s Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) record to Active up to 60 days in advance of the student’s return from a temporary absence. Previously, DSOs could only request to change the student’s record up to 30 days prior to the student’s return. You can find the notice here http://studyinthestates.dhs.gov/2015/06/schools-new-time-frame-to-request-corrections-to-student-statuses-in-sevis.
2. SEVIS will be unavailable beginning 8 p.m. EDT on Friday, June 26 through 8 p.m. EDT Sunday, June 28. The SEVP Study in the States website has full details http://studyinthestates.dhs.gov/2015/06/be-prepared-for-the-june-26-sevis-outage.
3. The format for the Form I-20, “Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant Student Status,” will change on June 26. This redesigned Form I-20 is part of the larger Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) Release 6.21. For full details visit http://studyinthestates.dhs.gov/2015/06/coming-soon-a-redesigned-form-i-20 .

PIER Announcement
This year, NAFSA Region XII will be held in Hawaii. Although the team is still working on the sessions, hotel registration is open now. Please see the following message from Brian Groves, Region XII chair (2015):
Hotel Registration Open

This is a reminder that you can now start booking your hotel at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Hotel and Resort in Waikiki. We recommend that you book your hotel early to take advantage of the discounted rate. These rates will be in effect for NAFSA Region XII conference participants five days before the conference and five days after the conference, and we have a limited number available for these rates so book your rooms Please go to https://resweb.passkey.com/go/1024NAFSA2015 to book your rooms.
Resort View
Ocean View
or you can also call in by phone to make your reservation:
Number to call: 808-949-4321 ask for group reservation
Group code: AVA


NAFSA Region XII Southern District
There will be a Southern California District one-day mini conference on Friday, August 14th, 2015 from 8:00 A.M. – 3:00 P.M. at California State University, Long Beach. You may now register for the conference. For more information, visit http://tinyurl.com/SoCalMiniConference2015
Or email the SoCal District Team at region12south@gmail.com
PIER Board
Chair - Kasey McCarthy, Gemological Institute of America Kasey.McCarthy@gia.edu
Vice - Chair - Yasue O'Neill, Palomar College Yoneill@palomar.edu
Treasurer - Martha Delgadillo, EC San Diego MarthaDelgadillo@ecenglish.com
Membership Coordinator - LyKai Johnson, EC San Diego lykaijohnson@ecenglish.com
Secretary - Eric Abutin, National University eabutin@nu.edu
Web Coordinator - Cadence Ellis, National University cellis@nu.edu