Intercultural Center

Overview

The Intercultural Center (ICC) supports international and domestic students of color by serving as advocates for them in their educational pursuits. ICC staff are available for consultation on multicultural and international issues for the entire campus. The office creates programs and events to enhance appreciation for and awareness of cultural diversity within the Bryant community.

The ICC is responsible for compliance with immigration regulations for the University and serves as the home of the Multicultural Student Union and the International Student Organization.

4MILE

4MILE@bryant Multicultural and International Leadership Experience

4MILE@bryant is a transition program traditionally held the week before fall classes begin for new multicultural and international students who have been admitted to Bryant University. Students have the opportunity to be paired with an upperclass mentor, get acquainted with their new home, and learn more academic, personal, social and cultural supports available throughout their four years at Bryant.

Multicultural and international students who participate in June orientation are still eligible to come to the 4MILE@bryant program. (We recognize that most international students are unable to attend June orientation and therefore there is time carved out at the beginning of the program to get you acclimated to campus and life in the U.S.) All participants take part in team building activities and interactive sessions facilitated by team leaders, faculty, and staff during the program week.

Throughout the first year students are assigned a 4MILE Peer Counselor. Students meet with their mentors regularly and participate in activities throughout the first year.

All students arriving by airplane, train, or bus please send your travel itinerary to: iccfriends@bryant.edu so that we will know when you are arriving.

Note: While the ICC cannot provide transportation, you can make your own transportation arrangements or contact All Occasion Transportation, (800) 454-1380, to make a reservation (fees will vary).

Accommodations

Students will receive their permanent room assignment when they arrive so be prepared to move in for the year. All meals will be provided during the program. Commuters may arrange for temporary on-campus housing for the duration of the program ONLY.

For a suggested list of what you will need for your room, refer to the What to Bring page. For students traveling from abroad or who are unable to bring everything they need, opportunities to shop for necessities will take place during the 4MILE program.

For parents and families, there are two hotels located less than 1 mile from campus: Holiday Inn Express & Suites and the Hampton Inn & Suites . Each offers complimentary full breakfast and an indoor heated pool. Limited transportation will be available to and from the Bryant campus from these locations only.

F-1 Visas

OBTAINING AN F-1 STUDENT VISA

This information is designed for Bryant University international students.

Your SEVIS (Student Exchange Visitor Information System) Form I-20, "Certificate of Eligibility," is necessary to obtain an F-1 student visa. This visa permits you to enter the United States for the purpose of studying at Bryant University. Although citizens of many countries are eligible for the Visa Waiver Pilot Program and therefore may travel to the U.S. on tourist visa or without a visa, students must have a student visa to study at Bryant University. If you enter the U.S. on a tourist visa or without a visa, you will be required to leave the U.S. in order to enter on a proper student visa. Therefore, it is important that you follow these instructions.

Review the SEVIS Form I-20

  1. Verify that the personal information in item 1 is correct. Please notify the Office of Admission at (401) 232-6100 immediately if you find an error.
  2. Review item 8 for accuracy and make sure it reflects the source of funds on your original documents. You must have these documents to present to the U.S. Consular Officer.
  3. Read carefully all information on page 2. This will explain YOUR legal responsibilities as an F-1 student in the U.S.
  4. Complete item 11 with a ballpoint pen and provide the information requested if under the age of 18.

SEVIS FEE

If you are seeking an F-1 visa from an embassy or consulate abroad for initial attendance at Bryant University, you must pay the SEVIS fee before applying for an F-1 visa. You may pay either by mail or over the internet. For more information, visit: http://www.ice.gov/sevis/i901/index.htm

Obtaining an F-1 Student Visa

We recommend that you contact a U.S. embassy or consulate as soon as possible. Processing times for visa issuance vary and may require additional time due to security checks on applications. For the latest information on visa processing, required materials, and current listings of U.S. Embassies and Consulates abroad, we recommend the following web link from the U.S. Department of State (DOS): usembassy.state.gov.

Canadian citizens do not require an F-1 entry visa to enter the U.S. from Canada but do require an I-20, passport, financial documentation and proof of SEVIS fee payment and must follow certain procedures. See Important Information for Canadian students on how to enter the U.S. on F1 status.

Required Documentation

For more detailed information, visit this page on the DOS website.

F-1 visa application process may vary at the U.S. embassy or consulate where you apply. You may consult the instructions available on the embassy or consulate website where you intend to apply.

  1. Online Nonimmigrant Visa Application at http://travel.state.gov/visa/forms/forms_4230.html
  2. A passport valid for travel to the U.S. with a validity date at least six months beyond your intended period of stay in the U.S. (unless exempt by country-specific agreements listed at http://www.state.gov/documents/organization/104770.pdf
  3. SEVIS Form I-20 issued by Bryant University
  4. SEVIS Fee Payment Receipt
  5. Letter of acceptance from Bryant University
  6. Evidence of sufficient funds
  7. Fee and one photograph; please refer to DOS website at  http://travel.state.gov/visa/visaphotoreq/visaphotoreq_5334.html
  8. Evidence of "compelling ties." Student Visa applicants must assure the consular officer that they have the binding ties to a residence in foreign country that they have no intention of abandoning, and that they will depart the U.S. when they have completed their studies. It is important that you are able to articulate your educational goals, emphasizing how your degree will help you when you return home.

Please be advised that F-1 visa is issued within 90 days from the program start date noted on your SEVIS I-20 line 5. If you apply more than 120 days prior to the program start date, the Embassy or Consulate will hold your application until it is able to issue the visa.

Entering the U.S.

This information is designed for Bryant University international students.

If you are entering the U.S. on I-20 with "initial attendance" on line 3, you cannot be admitted sooner than 30 days before the program start date.

When you arrive in the U.S., you will be required to present the following documents to a US Customs and Border Protection (USCBP) officer at the port of entry. Since you must show your documents before you are allowed to claim our bags, do not pack these documents in suitcases that are checked in:

  1. passport with valid F-1 visa (Canadian citizens are exempt from F-1 visa)
  2. financial documents
  3. SEVIS fee payment receipt
  4. SEVIS Form I-20

Upon arrival, you will be enrolled in the US-VISIT entry-exit program. Once USCBP officer examines your documents and allows you to enter the US, the official will determine the length of your visit on the electronic Arrival-Departure Record (Form I-94).Since Form I-94 documents your visa status and authorized stay in the US, you must access your I-94 at www.cpb.gov/I94, print and keep it in your passport once you arrive at Bryant. For more information on arrival procedure, visit http://www.cbp.gov/xp/cgov/travel/id_visa/study_exchange/exchange_arrivals.xml

Once you are permitted to enter the US and granted F-1 visa status, it is imperative that you understand your legal responsibilities as an F-1 student to maintain your F-1 status while in the US.

Important Information for Canadian Students - Obligation to Comply with Immigration Regulations

In terms of immigration regulations, the only difference between Canadians and other international students coming to the US is that Canadian citizens are not required to apply for an F-1 entry visa at a US consulate.

Some Canadians have mistakenly assumed that other regulations that apply to international students do not apply to them. Canadians are subject to the same regulations regarding employment in the US, requirement for full-time study and all other provisions for maintaining status. Other than applying for a visa, it is important that you read about and abide by all other provisions relating to F-1 status described in page 2 of SEVIS I-20. It is especially important for Canadian students to be vigilant about entering the US in proper student status, as immigration inspectors are accustomed to admitting Canadian citizens as visitors.

US-VISIT (United States Visitor and Immigrant Status Indicator Technology) is a program created by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to collect, maintain and share information, including biometric identifiers of foreign nationals who enter the United States. This information will be stored in a database and maintained by DHS and the Department of State as part of an individual's travel record.

Students Transferring to Bryant University

If you plan to leave the US prior to enrolling at Bryant University, you MUST USE Bryant University SEVIS Form I-20 to enter the US. If you already have a valid F-1 visa, you do not have to obtain a new one, even through visa annotation on your F-1 visa stamp in your passport may indicate different name of the educational institution. Follow the directions below regarding arrival at Bryant University.

Arrival at Bryant University

You are legally REQUIRED to register your immigration documents with the Intercultural Center (ICC) upon arrival at Bryant University. You MUST bring your passport, SEVIS Form I-20, Form I-94 and all previously issued Forms I-20 (if any) to International Student Advisor at the ICC. The registration process is completed at the time of check-in for all new undergraduate students during the orientation program called 4MILE@Bryant. For graduate students, this MUST be done within the first two weeks of classes. The ICC will help you with all immigration-related matters during your studies at Bryant University, however, it is YOUR responsibility to maintain your status.

If you are starting school in the fall, undergraduate students are REQUIRED to attend 4MILE. During 4MILE, topics such as travel, immigration regulations, how to maintain your status, and employment options will be discussed. For graduate students, the information will be provided at the time of check-in with the International Student Advisor.

Please feel free to contact the ICC with any questions. We look forward to meeting you soon and hope that your time at Bryant University will be academically and personally rewarding.

For more information, please contact:
Kaoru Paganelli
International Student Adviser, ICC
Phone: (401) 232-6946
Email: kpaganel@bryant.edu