Significant Service: International Students and Scholars Office provides critical support to students
Thursday, May 4, 2023
Media Contact: Kelli Norton | Communication Specialist | 405-744-5496 | firstname.lastname@example.org
Oklahoma State University’s Office of International Students and Scholars (ISS) recently marked 50 years of providing service to OSU international students, scholars and their families.
Although ISS was founded in 1972, staff members had served the international constituency for several years before its founding. ISS spent many years in the Student Union as a member of the Division of Student Affairs, but in 2019, the university began an effort to consolidate international affairs under one unit and reassigned ISS as an independent office to the School for Global Studies and Partnerships, which is now OSU Global.
The office provides special support services to sponsored students and scholars. The design of these services helps reduce stress levels, ease transitions and promote sustained academic and personal success.
Its primary function includes orientation and registration of new international students and scholars on campus; employment permit issuance; sponsored student services; immigration maintenance; internship application processing for continuing students; OPT post-degree internships for graduating internationals; and working with visiting scholars on J-visas.
Special constituencies within the international population require services beyond those listed in the university catalog.
For over 50 years, OSU has supported a unique constituency — sponsored international student programs. The office has proudly worked with many embassies; oil and petroleum companies; foreign universities; airlines; foundations; and other esteemed sponsors seeking to educate their populations by employing international individuals. OSU has had the privilege of working with more than 50 sponsors representing over 60 countries.
Another special constituency among OSU’s international population is visiting scholars (J-visa holders). Since the COVID-19 pandemic is waning, ISS has reestablished more efforts to bring Bridge USA J-1 scholars and interns to campus. J-1 exchange visitors have increased through the College of Veterinary Medicine and University Dining Services programs as well as the global exchange student program. As of January 2023, OSU has 103 J scholars, students and interns representing 26 countries.
“We are very excited about the many opportunities for educational exchange and continue working with departments across campus so they can see the benefits, and learn the process, of bringing scholars to the OSU campus,” said Tim Huff, director of ISS.
Photos By: Office of International Students and Scholars
Story By: Kelli Leech | GLOBAL Magazine