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UMass Lowell will resume on-campus instruction, research and campus life for Fall 2020. View the plan for more info.

Monthly Updates

For the University's latest COVID-19 (coronavirus) information, please review UMass Lowell's Alerts webpage and statement on COVID-19 (Coronavirus).

Please be sure to visit the International Students COVID-19 FAQ for answers to common questions you may have about the COVID-19 situation as an international student.

Visit the Maintenance of Status Webpage for more information on how to maintain status.

Please be aware of UMass Lowell's NEW Resources for English Language Learners.

Monthly Updates/Upcoming Deadlines

OPT Filing TimelineOptional Practical Training Applications Accepted NowStudents can apply for Post-OPT up to 90 days prior to the program completion date and no later than 60 days after the completion date.
Please note that while we will accept OPT applications prior to the 90-day filing timeline, we cannot process your OPT I-20 request any earlier than 90 days from your anticipated completion date.
Completion date does not necessarily mean degree conferral.
Please visit our Completion Date webpage to find out more about how USCIS defines completion date. You can also read further on our OPT Guide. The OPT Guide and application can be found on the Forms & Guides webpage.
The ISSO requires 5-7 business days for processing OPT applications.
If applying for Post-OPT, please check the International Student section of the Career & Co-Op Center's website.
DateEventLocation & Information
Summer 2020Webinar Wednesdays

New international students are invited to join ISSO and OMA for a series of webinars to learn more about what to expect at UMass Lowell, and studying in the U.S.

Please register for the sessions you are interested in via the Webinar Wednesdays webpage.

Summer 2020Office of Multicultural Affairs Summer EventsVirtual: please see OMA Programs & Events website for more information.
TimelineReminderAdditional Details
July 3, 2020ISSO ClosedThe ISSO will be closed on Friday, July 3 in observance of Independence Day.
iStart System Outage July 9 - 15, 2020If you need to submit an e-form request to ISSO (OPT, STEM, CPT, Extension of Program, etc.) - please be sure to submit your application BEFORE July 9, or after July 15.ISSO''s iStart system will be down from July 9 - 15 for a system upgrade. Please anticipate delays in processing due to this outage. If you need to submit an ISSO e-form request, please submit this before July 9 or after July 15.
Until Further NoticeISSO Remote Operations and ServicesThe ISSO will operate remotely and will continue all services and advising during the University's transition to remote, online learning and working.
Please note: Documents will not be available for pick-up at Cumnock Hall. To receive your documents, you must complete a shipping request.
Call-in advising hours will continue as planned.
All student-driven e-form requests will still be processed within the typical ISSO processing timeframe.
July 2, 2020ISSO Office is Relocating!The ISSO staff is still operating remotely, until further notice. However, our mailing address will change as of July 2. For our most up to date contact information, please refer to our Contact Us page.
Address Change TimelineYou must update your U.S. address within 10 days of changing your address.For more information on how to update your address, visit our Maintaining Status page.
Latest COVID-19 InformationUMass Lowell Health Services and Environmental & Emergency Management are actively monitoring and preparing for the coronavirus (COVID-19).UMass Lowell's proactive efforts to update the University on its ongoing efforts to monitor and prepare for impacts related to COVID-19 (coronavirus) include messages to the campus community. You can review UMass Lowell's statement on COVID-19 (coronavirus).
You can find the answers to common questions you may have on the International Students COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions.
Reminder as of June 2020Driving in Massachusetts on a Foreign Driver's LicenseForeign licensed drivers from any country, that meet certain requirements, may be eligible to operate a motor vehicle in Massachusetts.
Reminder as of June 2020Possession of Marijuana is a Federal OffenseImmigration law treats all marijuana or other illegal substance activity as a crime. Possession, use, and/or admission of marijuana use (legal or illegal) or any other illegal substance by persons who are not U.S. Citizens can result in harsh immigration consequences. Illegal substances, including marijuana, are also prohibited on the UMass Lowell campus. Customs routinely checks for marijuana and other illegal substances at the Port of Entry or during any air travel within the U.S.
Reminder as of June 2020U.S. Customs and Border Protection also checks electronic devicesPlease check the ISSO Travel Page for more detailed travel information.

Beware of Phone and Email Scams

Avoid Shipping Errors or Processing Delays

  • Do not reach out to USCIS to inquire on the status of your application prior to the listed processing time.
    • This may further delay the processing of your card.
  • Ensure that your name is clearly marked on the mailbox that you requested your EAC be sent to on your I-765.
    • A delivery from USCIS is government mail and will NOT be delivered if your name is not clearly marked.