International Scholars and Research Assistants
- Visas are employer issued and processed by the department. For general information, review the website of the Office of International Students and Scholars. Each visa is specific in requirements and changes to these requirements are made frequently. If you are planning on inviting a foreign national student or collegue to MSU there are many possible visa options with numerous requirements and limitations. Please contact Tracey Barner firstname.lastname@example.org before making any specific arrangements for a foreign visitor so she can determine the correct type of visa for the individual's specific needs and circumstances.
- The Department will make housing arrangements for visitors prior to their arrival. The Housing office is located in the Spartan Village Apartment Complex on Harrison Road; 1460 Middlevale, Suite 131. Business hours are Monday through Friday 8:00am – 5:00pm. Visitors arriving during business hours can check in and pick up their key. Arrival after 5:00 pm can be arranged if the PLB office staff is notified in advance. A “permission letter” provided by the department is required to receive a temporary key from the Housing Maintenance office.
- Plant Biology Office: Scholars must check in with the office as soon as possible. The Plant Biology Building is located on Wilson Road and the main office is in Rm. 166. The hours are Monday through Friday 8:00 am – 5:00 pm. The office will provide the scholar with an employment verification letter which is required for check-in with the Office of International Students and Scholars (OISS).
- OISS: It is very important that all newly-arrived scholars check in with the OISS as soon as possible after arrival to activate their SEVIS record. They need to take their employment verification to OISS, located in 103 International Center. They will be issued an I-9 which should be returned to the office so that the appointment papers can be processed. They will also need a J-1 Scholar Social Security letter, supplied by OISS, to apply for a permanent Social Security card.
Orientation: J-1 Scholar Orientation takes place every Thursday at 10 am in 103 International Center. At check in, the reception staff will schedule an orientation session.
- MSU ID: Scholars and Research Associates are issued an MSU Z-pid number with their DS-2019 request. This Z-pid number and a copy of their appointment papers can be taken to the Hannah Administration Building, Rm.50 where an MSU ID will be issued. The ID card provides access to the library, IM facilities, etc.
Social Security Information
- International employees should wait ten days after entering the US before applying for an SSN. SEVIS records must be entered into the system before an application can be submitted.
- In order to apply for a SSN, International employees need the following documents:
- 1.) Valid Passport
- 2.) Original I-94 Form (white card in passport)
- 3.) Original I-20 or DS-2019 form
- 4.) Letter from OISS confirming eligibility
- Please ask for a letter from the SS office stating that you have submitted an application for a SS card. This is needed for the Payroll Office.
- Applications are accepted at the Lansing Branch of the Social Security Administration which is located at 5210 Perry Robinson Circle. The regular office hours are Monday through Friday from 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM.
- Once an application has been approved, the SSA will send a Social Security card to the address provided when the application was submitted. Usual processing time is 2 weeks. If additional security procedures are necessary, processing times may range from 4-8 weeks.
- International employees can begin employment without a SSN at MSU for one month while waiting for their permanent card to be issued. When the official Social Security card is received, please provide a copy to the Payroll Office immediately. The Payroll office is located in Rm. 350 of the Hannah Administration Bldg. At that time the employee can complete their State and Federal Tax Forms with assistance from staff in the Payroll office.
- Social Security cards should be kept in a safe place and SS numbers should be given out only as needed to guard against identity theft.
- The tax return or an extension should be filed by 15 April 2007. Please be aware that each scholar is ultimately responsible for the accuracy of his/her income tax returns and any resulting penalties or interest.
- If you have already returned home by the time taxes are due, please email [mailto: email@example.com].
- Please click here for Tax workshop schedules and resources.
J-1 Scholar Departure
- Please keep the following in mind when planning your departure from MSU:
- You must notify the OISS in writing of your intent to depart. Please complete the Scholar Departure Form and return it to the OISS at least two weeks prior to your departure. The form may be submitted in person or via postal mail, fax, or email.
- J-1 scholars are given a 30-day grace period at the end of the program. This means that you have until 30 days after the program end date on your DS-2019 to depart the US.