How do I bring a tenure-track teaching faculty member?

Keys:

DHS = U.S. Department of Homeland Security: Overarching U.S. government agency under which USCIS falls

DOL = U.S. Department of Labor, determines prevailing wage, certifies labor certification applications

USCIS = U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services: Adjudicates immigration applications such as H-1B and F-1 OPT


Departmental Requirements

Nonimmigrant Category

F-1 Student (OPT)

H-1B Temporary Worker

Eligibility

  • Completing U.S. degree (12-month OPT)
  • Currently on OPT (24-month extension)
  • ISU position must be directly related to most current U.S. degree
  • Position must require at least a bachelor's degree in a specific field
  • Minimum wage requirement as determined by U.S. Department of Labor
  • Not eligible if Exchange Visitor subject to 212(e)
  • Requires sponsorship by employer

Maximum Length of Stay

  • 12 months
  • Additional 24 months if STEM field degree
  • 72 months (but ISU limits postdocs to 5 years)
  • Can request up to 36 months at a time

Estimated Time for Processing

  • 90-120 days
  • Eligible to continue working while STEM OPT application is pending
  • 4-6 months for initial H-1B
  • Additional 4-6 weeks if need H-1B visa

Costs to Department

  • $0
  • $750 ISSO Scholar Fee
  • $460 Application Fee to DHS
  • $500 Anti-Fraud Fee to DHS
  • $2,500 Premium Processing Fee to DHS (optional for 15-working day USCIS expedited processing)

Departmental Request

  • No request made
  • Cystart Forms: Add New Person (if not a former ISU student or scholar) and Other Visiting Scholar/Employee
  • Other Forms: Export Control Worksheet
  • Request made through Cystart
  • Cystart Forms: Add New Person (if not a former ISU student or scholar) and H-1B Employee Application
  • Other Forms: Export Control Worksheet

Who is Involved?

  • U.S. school from which student graduated
  • USCIS
  • Hiring department
  • ISSO
  • DOL and USCIS
  • U.S. Embassy if candidate is abroad

Departmental Requirements

  • Report to ISSO when employment ends
  • STEM OPT requires training plan
  • STEM OPT requires monitoring of progress and reporting of changes to training plan
  • STEM OPT requires self-evaluations which employer approves
  • Report to ISSO when employment ends or before change in position
  • Offer paid return transportation to home country of employee if employer terminates job prior to end of approved H-1B status
  • Monitor work hours for employment less than 40 hours per week
  • Meet DOL prevailing wage requirement

Notes

  • Position must be related to degree
  • Cannot begin work until USCIS approves OPT
  • No more than 90 days of unemployment during 12-month OPT
  • Must work at least 20 hours per week
  • USCIS processing times can vary widely
  • $1,210 cost for each extension
  • Employer/job-specific
  • H-1B transfers to ISU may work once ISU application filed

Dependents (child under age 21, spouse)

  • Not eligible for work
  • May study part time
  • May study full time if avocational only
  • Not eligible to work
  • May study part time or full time

Keys:

DHS = U.S. Department of Homeland Security: Overarching U.S. government agency under which USCIS falls

DOL = U.S. Department of Labor, determines prevailing wage, certifies labor certification applications

USCIS = U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services: Adjudicates immigration applications such as H-1B and F-1 OPT

Nonimmigrant Category

F-1 Student (OPT)

H-1B Temporary Worker

Eligibility

  • Currently on OPT (24-month extension)
  • ISU position must be directly related to most current U.S. degree
  • Major for most current U.S. degree must be on USCIS' STEM List
  • Position must require at least a bachelor's degree in a specific field
  • Minimum wage requirement as determined by U.S. Department of Labor
  • Requires sponsorship by employer

Maximum Length of Stay

  • 24 months if STEM field degree
  • 36 months
  • Can request up to 36 months at a time

Estimated Time for Processing

  • 90-120 days
  • 4-6 months

Costs to Department

  • $0
  • $750 ISSO Scholar Fee
  • $460 Application Fee to DHS
  • $2,500 Premium Processing Fee to DHS (optional for 15-working day USCIS expedited processing)

Departmental Request

  • No request made
  • Cystart Forms: None
  • Other Forms: Export Control Worksheet
  • Request made through Cystart
  • Cystart Forms: H-1B Employee Extensionn
  • Other Forms: Export Control Worksheet

Who is Involved?

  • U.S. school from which student graduated
  • USCIS
  • Hiring department
  • ISSO
  • DOL and USCIS

Departmental Requirements

  • Report to ISSO when employment ends
  • STEM OPT requires completion of training plan
  • STEM OPT requires employer to monitor progress and report of changes to training plan
  • STEM OPT requires self-evaluations which employer approves
  • Report to ISSO when employment ends or before change in position
  • Offer paid return transportation to home country of employee if employer terminates job prior to end of approved H-1B status
  • Monitor work hours for employment less than 40 hours per week
  • Meet DOL prevailing wage requirement

Notes

  • Position must be related to degree
  • Eligible to continue working while STEM OPT application is pending
  • No more than 120 days of unemployment during 24-month OPT
  • Must work at least 20 hours per week
  • Employer/job-specific

Dependents (child under age 21, spouse)

  • Not eligible for work
  • May study part time
  • May study full time if avocational only
  • Not eligible to work
  • May study part time or full time

Eligibility and Search Guidelines

  • ISU Guidelines for Sponsoring "Green Cards" - Revision in progress

Length of Stay

  • Indefinite

Steps:

  • Department submits paper request to ISSO once appointment has been finalized
  • ISSO submits Prevailing Wage Request to the U.S. Department of Labor
  • ISSO submits Labor Certification (PERM) to the U.S. Department of Labor
  • ISSO submits I-140 petition to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
  • Faculty member (and each family member) files I-485 to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services for adjustment of nonimmigrant status to U.S. permanent resident
  • Faculty member (and each family member) will have an appointment with USCIS for biometric purposes (if over age 13) and a second one for a personal interview

Timing

18 month window to complete the LCA step begins with employment offer date

    Following processing times subject to change without notice
  • 2-4 months: Prevailing Wage Request
  • 4-6 months: Labor Certification
  • 9-12 months: I-140
  • 12-18 months: I-485

Required Forms and Documentation

  • Paper application to ISSO
  • Written documentation of all ads used in search process
  • Letter of Intent

Other Case-Specific Required Forms


Department Costs

  • $1,500: ISSO Scholar Support Fee
  • $460: USCIS I-140 Fee
  • $2,500: USCIS Premium Processing Fee (for I-140 petition)

Employee Resources on Employment-Based Green Cards

Employee may also be eligible to file an EB-1A application through the "Extraordinary Ability" category, an EB-2 application through the "National Interest Waiver" category, an EB-3 application through the Professionals subcategory, or a family-based application, but would file any of these independent of ISU. Please direct the employee to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services website for further information.