FOOTHILL COLLEGE Information on international students during the outbreak

Updated: Apr 1

I. ACCESS TO THE LATEST INFORMATION

  • Join us for our weekly Zoom Chat session every Tuesday from 1 pm to 2 pm starting March 31!

We will send weekly reminders but this will be the schedule, with the same Zoom sign- in information, for the next few months.

Stay connected with ISP and other current students!

Q&A- ask questions!

Receive important immigration regulation updates!


Zoom Drop-In Immigration Advising will be done on Mondays and Thursdays from 2 to 3 pm.  Please join this Zoom chat and ask your immigration questions, or send an e-mail to brownbarbara@fhda.edu to ask questions or request an individual Zoom appointment.

The link for the Zoom meeting below is the one that will work for all of these Zoom Drop-In Advising chats

https://zoom.us/j/942382018?pwd=aGE1bjRxVW9tOUl5Nzdzdjg3eVovdz09


  • Our virtual campus site has tips for using Canvas, making student services appointments online and accessing emergency relief funds if you need a laptop or internet. If you need assistance, please visit the Student & Faculty Support Center.

  • Please also feel free to contact Foothill at 650.949.7249 or FHGetHelp@fhda.edu. Staff will assist you as soon as they can.


II. Immigration Update- I-20 Travel Signatures:

  • As you know, immigration regulations are allowing students enrolled in at least 12 units to maintain their F1 status from abroad for the Spring quarter only due to COVID-19. 

The international office needs to confirm where you will complete the Spring quarter (in the US or abroad).  Students who are studying abroad will have the mandatory health insurance waived for the spring quarter.

Please click the link below to let us know where you are studying for Spring quarter by April 6:

https://applyinternational.fhda.edu/register/?id=2806f2af-33e1-41e8-8b44-c9a83a4c561e


  • Due to COVID-19, we received notice that I-20's may now be signed electronically.

Until further notice, we will not be shipping I-20's locally or abroad.

If you need a travel signature, please email Merry Quittner at quittnermerry@fhda.edu.

Please include:

  1. Passport name

  2. Student ID number

  3. SEVIS number

  4. Subject: Travel Signature

Please let us know if you will be studying in the U.S. or outside of the U.S. for the spring quarter in your e-mail requesting a travel signature.

  • The ISP office is currently closed; however, our staff will continue to respond to your inquiries via email at fhinternational@fhda.edu between the hours of

9am – 5pm Monday to Thursday

9am – 4pm Fridays (Pacific Standard Time).

If you have a specific question for our Immigration Advisor, Ms. Barbara Brown, you can email her directly as well.

  • we do not have directions from the State Department regarding the validity of your visa. If you are outside the United States for 5 months or more, you may be required to pay the SEVIS fee again and apply for a new visa.


III. Course in Spring Quarter:

Spring Quarter Begins April 13; Classes Will Be Delivered Virtually

  • All spring courses, including PE and labs, will taught be via virtual formats. If you have not done so already, be sure to register for your spring classes. Registration is also open for six-week Second Spring courses. Check the class dates and register in MyPortal.

  • Please note that some classes will be taught at the regular times listed in the schedule (synchronous learning). Classes designated as 'online' will typically allow for more flexibility with when and how you engage with the course content. Some virtual classes will combine both approaches.

  • Contact your instructor if you have any questions about the method of delivery for your spring classes. You can find faculty contact information on the college website.

  • If you decide to complete the spring quarter from your home country, you do so at your own risk. Please follow instructions from your professor about completing your spring quarter courses as some course materials or examinations may not be available outside the United States.

  • You will remain in F-1 status only if you register for a minimum of 12 units for the spring quarter.

  • Please note that if courses that have been held in virtual formats return to in-person, on-campus courses, students will be expected to return and be physically present on campus in order to successfully complete the class.

  • The materials borrowed from school:



IV. COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) for Continuing F-1 International Students:

Please note that this is a very dynamic situation and the information below is current as of March 16, 2020. Remember to check your email and the websites below for the most up-to-date information.

  • Where can I get the most up to date information about COVID-19, campus closures, and my status as an F-1 international student?

Please check your email as we will continue to send you important updates as they happen. You can also monitor the Foothill COVID-19 Update Website as well as the International Student Programs (ISP) page for more information.


  • Is the campus closed?

As of Tuesday, March 17th, the Foothill College campus will be closed as a precautionary measure. There are no diagnosed cases of COVID-19 on campus. Most services will be offered online and you will be able to complete your winter 2020 classes and receive grades and credit for your classes.


  • How do I access services such as counseling, immigration advising, etc.?

Most student services will be offered remotely, including counseling and immigration advising. Please see below for more information about who to contact with questions or to schedule a virtual appointment:

Immigration Advising: Barbara Brown – Immigration Advisor (brownbarbara@fhda.edu)

International Counseling: You can schedule a virtual counseling appointment by visiting the Counseling website. For more information about counseling services, please visit the Counseling website.


  • How will I know what I need to do to complete my class virtually?

Your professors will be in touch with you with further instructions and course requirements. Please continue to monitor your email for important updates. If you have questions about course requirements, please contact your professor directly.


  • If all of my classes are held virtually, what does that mean for me as an international student?

Courses that would have been regularly held in-person, including hybrid courses, will be held using virtual methods for the foreseeable future. The college will return to face-to-face instruction as soon as possible. During this time, these courses will be considered as hybrid courses for immigration purposes, which is allowable per federal regulations. Unless you register for 100% online courses you should be ready to return to campus when the situation improves.

If you register for 12 online units and decide to study remotely, you may continue to maintain your F1 status abroad. Note: This is an exception only due to the emergency situation for the spring quarter. We will continue to update you with any changes as they unfold.


  • Can I finish the winter quarter online from outside the United States?

Please follow instructions from your professor about completing your winter quarter courses as some course materials or examinations may not be available outside the United States. If you plan to leave the United States, please ensure that your I-20 has a valid travel signature and check-in with ISP if you have any questions. Please note: Even with a valid F-1 visa, international travel back to the U.S. may continue to be restricted. Immigration, travel, and health screening policies may change without notice. Please visit the CDC website for the most up to date information regarding COVID-19 and travel restrictions.


  • Can I travel outside the United States over the spring break and come back to start the spring quarter?

Yes, you may travel outside the United States, but please ensure that your I-20 has a valid travel signature. Please also be aware that even with a valid F-1 visa, international travel back to the U.S. may continue to be restricted. Immigration, travel, and health screening policies may change without notice. Please visit the CDC website for the most up to date information regarding COVID-19 and travel restrictions.


  • What if I decide to take the spring quarter off and want to continue in Fall 2020?

If you do not register for 12 units for the spring quarter by April 13, 2020, your status will be terminated for Authorized Early Withdrawal. You will be required to reapply to Foothill College, obtain a new I-20, re-pay the SEVIS fee, and obtain a new F-1 visa. If you do not return for the spring quarter the next available quarter is fall 2020.


  • I need a travel signature on my I-20 signature. What do I do?

You can request an I-20 travel signature. Please contact Ms. Barbara Brown (brownbarbara@fhda.edu) for more information or to schedule a virtual appointment.


  • Does my international health insurance cover the cost of COVID-19 testing? What about treatment if I get sick?

The mandatory health insurance through Foothill College covers the cost of COVID-19 testing as well as treatment for F-1 students. If you have any further questions about health insurance coverage, please contact Lark Cratty (crattylark@fhda.edu)

If you have a health emergency, please dial 911.


  • I want to return to my home country immediately. Would it be safe to say online is the plan for the remainder of the semester and I can go home?

At this point, we do not have any further information about how long the campus closure and virtual course instruction will continue. If courses that have been held in virtual formats return to in-person, on-campus courses, students will be expected to come and be physically present on campus in order to successfully complete the courses.

  • I do not want to study virtually, what can I do?

We understand your concern. This is an unusual situation and our staff and faculty are here to support you. We have moved to virtual classes to ensure the health and safety of everyone.



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