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Glossary

F-1 Visa: The F-1 Visa is the visa category for nonimmigrant international students who are seeking to earn a degree from a US college or university. Visas are what give students permission to enter the United States. 

J-1 Visa: The J-1 Visa is the visa category for international students or scholars who are seeking to participate in an exchange program with a US college or university. 

I-20: Official immigration document for F-1 Visa Holders (degree seeking international students). Certifies your eligibility to come to the US as an F-1 student. 

DS-2019: Official immigration document for J-1 Visa Holders (international exchange students). Certifies your eligibility to come to the US as a J-1 student. 

I-94: Official arrival/departure record for all non-US citizens. The I-94 shows what status you were admitted in and provides all the details of your last entry into the United States. 

D/S: Notation on I-94 that means Duration of Status. This means that you were admitted to the US until your current status in the US ends. For F-1 and J-1 visa holders, this will mean the end date on your I-20 or DS-2019. 

SEVIS: Student and Exchange Visitor Information System. This is the database where all of your information regarding your student status is stored. 

DSO: Designated School Official. This is someone who can assist you with your SEVIS record and helps to maintain the system. DSOs can sign in the travel signature section. 

USCIS: United States Customs & Immigration Services. A component of the Department of Homeland Security that is in oversees lawful immigration in all of its various forms. 

DHS: Department of Homeland Security. Department of US national government. 

DOS: Department of State. Department of US national government that oversees the visa process as well as the exchange visitor program.  

OISS: Office of International Students & Scholars. Trinity’s Office that assists all international students with immigration, cultural adjustment, and advocates for international students throughout the College. 

CPT: Curricular Practical Training. A benefit of F-1 status that allows international students to work off campus if the experience is “integral to the student’s curriculum”. At Trinity, this is defined as an internship for credit work experience. 

OPT: Optional Practical Training. A benefit of F-1 status that allows international students to engage in one year of practical training (paid or unpaid off campus employment) in their field of study. This can be used before or after graduation but typically, is saved for post-graduation. 

I-765: Form used to apply for Optional Practical Training through USCIS. 

EAD: Employment Authorization Document. Once you are approved for OPT, you will receive an EAD that proves your eligibility and authorization to work in the United States. 

SSN: Social Security Number. When you are offered a job (on campus or off), you must get a social security number in order to be paid.  

ITIN: Individual Taxpayer Identification Number. Those who have taxable income through financial aid but do not work on campus must apply for an ITIN in order to file taxes. 

GLACIER: Online tax software purchased by Trinity College to assist international students and scholars in filing taxes every year. 

Resident Alien: A person who is not a US citizen but has been in the US long enough to be considered a Resident for tax purposes. 

Non-Resident Alien: A person who is not a US citizen and has not been in the US long enough to be considered a resident for tax purposes. Most international students fall into this category. 

Non-Immigrant Alien: Students and scholars on F and J visas are considered non-immigrants. These visas mean that you do not intend to immigrate to the United States after your status here is complete and you must prove your non-immigrant intentions during your visa interview. 

R-229: Form to apply for driver’s license or learner’s permit in the state of Connecticut.