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Office of International Studies and Programs


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Central Washington University
Office of International Studies and Programs
Hebeler Hall 102
400 E. University Way
Ellensburg, WA 98926-7408

OISP Responds to Changed SEVP Guidance

Central Washington University and the Office of International Studies and Programs have responded to the July 6 updated guidance from SEVP regarding registration during the COVID crisis. The text of the letter sent to international students follows:

July 8, 2020

Dear current or prospective CWU F-1 international student,

You may have already heard about the updated guidance from the Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) regarding the Fall 2020 quarter. We know you may be wondering what it means for you.

At this time, OISP (Office of International Studies & Programs) is actively working to apply SEVP’s new guidance to CWU’s current and prospective students. The guidance issued by SEVP leaves several outstanding issues, and we are working with our SEVP liaison to ensure accurate application of the guidance to our students.

For now, please note the following issues have already been brought to our attention:

  • This guidance DOES allow for new international students to enter the U.S. this fall to enroll in at least one in-person or hybrid course towards their academic degree program.
  • This guidance DOES allow for certain accommodations to the usual limit on online classes for international students.
  • This guidance DOES NOT mean that all international students must depart the U.S. As long as you are enrolled in at least one in-person or hybrid course towards your academic degree program, you may remain in the U.S.
  • This guidance DOES NOT affect students currently participating in Optional Practical Training (OPT).
  • This guidance DOES allow students to take online classes in your home country; however, you may be required to apply for a new student visa, receive a new I-20, and pay a new SEVIS I-901 fee if and when you intend to return to the U.S. to resume in-person classes. This may also affect OPT eligibility.

In the next few weeks, we will provide you with information YOU need for YOUR specific situation. And, very soon, we will hold a virtual information session where we can share information with you through a discussion and answer common questions. We will be in touch with you to let you know when the virtual information session is scheduled.

Current students with questions and concerns should contact their International Advisor, either Roslyn Moes at or Caitlin Lawson at Newly admitted and prospective students should contact the International Student Recruiter Kimberly Valenti at or Stacy Soderstrom at

We expect more than 400 international students to attend CWU in the fall. We will work individually with each student to ensure their in-person, hybrid, and/or online classes meet federal requirements for their F-1 visas. Our goal is to make sure you can start or continue working toward earning your degree.

You are a very important and valuable part of our CWU family.


Michelle DenBeste
Provost/Vice President for Academic and Student Life

Ediz Kaykayoglu,
Interim Associate Provost for Extended Learning and Outreach
Executive Director, Office of International Studies & Programs

A PDF version of this letter is available here.

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