News and Announcements

March 2021

USDOS Updates National Interest Exemption for Certain Travelers from the Schengen Area, United Kingdom, and Ireland
February 12, 2021

On February 10, 2021, the U.S. Department of State issued an update on the National Interest Exemption for Certain Travelers from the Schengen Area, United Kingdom, and Ireland. The guidance for F-1 visa holders is confirmed as follows: “Students traveling from the Schengen Area, the UK, and Ireland with valid F-1 and M-1 visas do […]

January 2021

Executive Order Extending Travel Restriction to U.S. from Iran, China, Brazil, Europe/Schengen Countries (including United Kingdom and Ireland); adding South Africa
January 26, 2021

On January 25, 2021, President Biden signed an Executive Order to maintain the COVID travel restrictions for entry to the U.S. within 14 days of being physically present in Brazil and most countries of Europe (Schengen countries, including the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland). The order also confirms that the COVID travel restrictions […]

Biden Administration Revokes Trump Administration “Travel Bans”
January 26, 2021

On January 20, 2021 President Biden issued a Proclamation on Ending Discriminatory Bans on Entry to The United States. This Proclamation revokes the following Executive Orders issued by the Trump Administration, also known as the “Travel Bans”: *Executive Order 13780 of March 6, 2017:  clarifications on countries identified in Executive Order 13769 of January 27, […]

ACE Sends Letter to USCIS Addressing OPT/STEM OPT Processing Delays
January 26, 2021

On January 26, 2021, the American Council on Education (ACE) sent a letter to USDHS addressing the ongoing concerns of the higher education community on the OPT/STEM OPT processing delays at USCIS that are impacting international students across the U.S. We will be sure to update the Major Immigration Updates webpage, and the ISO Knowledge […]

U.S.-Canada-Mexico “Non-Essential” Travel Restrictions Extended to 02/21/2021
January 15, 2021

UPDATED 01/22/2021: USCBP USCBP has posted to its Twitter account that the Non-Essential travel restriction between Canada, the U.S. and Mexico has been extended for an additional period (to February 21, 2021). UPDATED 01/15/2021: Recent media reports, and an announcement from the Canadian Prime Minister, indicate that the Non-Essential travel restriction between Canada, the U.S. […]

U.S. will require negative Covid-19 tests for international travelers entering the U.S.
January 13, 2021

Under a new federal Order that will take effect January 26, 2021, air passengers arriving to the US from a foreign country will be subject to new COVID-19 testing requirements.  Passengers will be required to get tested for COVID-19 infection no more than 3 days before their flight departs and to provide proof of the negative […]

Trump Administration Extends Two Immigration- Related Proclamations to March 31, 2021
January 5, 2021

On December 31, 2020, the Trump administration announced the extension of the following two policies: (1) Immigrant entry restriction extended to March 31, 2021: On April 22, 2020, a Presidential Proclamation narrowly restricted entry to the U.S. of certain persons outside the U.S. who have been granted immigrant visa stamps (issued by U.S. Consulates, after […]

December 2020

U.S.-Canada-Mexico “Non-Essential” Travel Restrictions Extended to 01/21/2021
December 21, 2020

UPDATED 12/20/2020: USCBP announces via Twitter that Non-Essential travel restriction between Canada, the U.S. and Mexico has been extended. The posting is not as definitive as past notices, referring to “land border ports of entry”, but it indicates the restriction “remains in effect”. While no expiration date is indicated, we assume that the restriction is […]

Guidance on Remote Student Appointments Performed Outside the U.S. (Spring 2021)
December 7, 2020

December 2020 Update (posted 12/07/2020) On December 7, 2020, Ian Waitz, Vice Chancellor for Undergraduate and Graduate Education at MIT, emailed and posted a “December 2020 Update” and FAQ for Guidance on Remote Student Appointments Performed Outside the U.S. for the Spring 2021 semester. Please view the full “December 2020 Update” and FAQ online here.

Court Rulings Halt Implementation of Recent H-1B/DOL/Prevailing Wage Interim Final Rules
December 4, 2020

As a result of a court ruling on December 1, 2020, the two rules affecting the H-1B and E-3 visa programs, and PERM Labor Certifications that were described in our Update of October 21, 2020, are no longer in effect.  The rules affected are: The US Department of Labor Interim (DOL) Rule “Strengthening Wage Protections for the Temporary […]