The US Immigration System
The USA is sometimes described as a ‘Nation of Immigrants’, because many Americans can trace their heritage back to generations born in other countries. However, immigration can be a polarizing topic politically, and government immigration policies can change dramatically depending on who is in charge.
If you are considering staying in the USA long-term, it is a good idea to stay updated on developments in immigration policy. The following are helpful resources:
Klasko Immigration Law Partners, LLP, is a Philadelphia immigration law firm that works with many local schools. Klasko has a blog and podcast that offer insight into immigration policy updates.
NOLO has articles with helpful advice on topics like eligibility for a green card or H-1B status.
ImmigrationHelp.org offers comprehensive guides on different immigration processes and benefits.
The ACLU can help you understand your rights as someone living in the USA, and offers advice on what to do if you find yourself in legal trouble or interacting with law enforcement.
Your school’s international office is a vital source of information. We encourage you to maintain a relationship with your international advisor and attend any immigration-related programming they might offer.
People in F-1, M-1, and J-1 visa status are considered ‘nonimmigrants’, because these visas are considered temporary. Colleges and universities that enroll international students and scholars are required by the government to follow specific regulations and share certain information on their students with government immigration agencies.
Take a look at the Immigration Glossary for explanations of some of the terminology you will encounter as a person in nonimmigrant visa status.