International Student and Scholar Services

 International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) promotes a global perspective for the USF community through educational and programmatic outreach while fostering the holistic development of international students and scholars by providing support services and immigration advising.

The ISSS team works to create a welcoming environment and provide high quality services for international students and the University community. Through our programs and services, we encourage all students to develop a global perspective and learn about cultures in addition to their own. We strive to provide our students with skills necessary to become fully integrated members of the USF community and well-prepared citizens of the world.

To fulfill our mission, ISSS offers Orientation Programs, Immigration Advising and Document Support, Informational Workshops, Educational Programs, and Advocacy/Training.

International Student and Scholar Services assists various student groups and hosts educational programming to promote the global mission of the University. Student-centered programs include: International Student Association, Global Living Community, International Advisory Council, and International Network Program.

ISSS is open from 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday. We can be reached as follows:

International Student and Scholar Services
University Center Room 402
2130 Fulton Street
San Francisco, CA 94117-10880
+1 (415) 422-2654 telephone
+1 (415) 422-2412 fax   

See below for details about ISSS.

Educational and Programmatic Outreach

International Student Association

The International Student Association (ISA) promotes cultural education, advocates for the USF international student body, and provides a social community by being the voice of the international students, creating social interactions, and developing educational opportunities for cultural enrichment.

Advised by ISSS and recognized as an umbrella organization by the Student Leadership and Engagement Office, the International Student Association is a student group charged with representing the USF international student community.


Culturescape is the signature event for the International Student Association. Each November, usually in conjunction with the International Education Week celebration, Culturescape is celebrated at USF.

The event includes student performances (i.e., dance, voice, instrument, fashion, etc.) that highlight international cultures. Following the presentations, everyone is invited to enjoy international cuisine provided by international student organizations.

International Network Program

The International Network Program (INP) facilitates community development and assists with transitional adjustment for incoming international students by providing social activities and opportunities for engagement among new and returning USF students. The program is open to current U.S. domestics and internationals (as mentors) and all new international students, graduate and undergraduate.

Planned activities are offered monthly for the INP members. Additionally, group members are encouraged to meet independently to build relationships.

International Advisory Council

The International Advisory Council (IAC) serves as a consultation body to International Student and Scholar Services by identifying international student concerns, disseminating important information to the international student community, and initiating proactive measures to address international student needs.

IAC was established in the Fall of 2005. Membership is open to any student organization with an international emphasis.

Global Living Community

The Global Living Community (GLC) strives to develop an intercultural community that stimulates exchange of cultures within an intentional living-learning environment.

The community consists of U.S. domestic and international students, sharing the common goals of gaining a global perspective, building a strong community, learning from each other, helping those in need, and forming meaningful relationships. GLC members live together in the Lone Mountain residence hall.

GLC meets weekly for activities such as guest speakers on global justice issues, international films, and cultural dinners in the city. GLC also participates in community service projects.

International Education Week

The week prior to the Thanksgiving holiday is International Education Week (IEW).

At USF we sponsor a week-long program of activities that typically include an International Fair with the San Francisco consulates, an appreciation reception for faculty and staff, an opportunity for storytelling, an educational speaker, Culturescape, and more!

Support Services and Immigration Advising

Orientation Programs

International Student and Scholar Services conducts mandatory orientation programs at the beginning of each semester for new undergraduate and graduate international students. The programs address areas of cultural adjustment, academics in the United States, immigration matters, San Francisco resources, and other student concerns.

Informational Workshops

ISSS conducts a variety of workshops to provide information and assistance to internationals.

Workshop topics include off-campus employment (i.e., Optional Practical Training/Curricular Practical Training), employment after completing F-1 status (i.e., H1-B visa), job success strategies in the United States (i.e., cover letters, resumes, networking, interviewing, alumni advice, etc.), and taxes.

Immigration Advising and Documentation Support

Internationally-related paperwork is processed through ISSS once international students and scholars arrive at USF. ISSS updates records in the federally mandated system, SEVIS (Student and Exchange Visitor Information System), to ensure internationals maintain lawful status while in the United States.

ISSS advisers provide internationals with assistance in understanding the U.S. immigration regulations and navigating application procedures for benefits such as status verification, work authorization, change of status, and exit/re-entry consultation. Specific documentation services are also available (e.g., issuance of I-20/DS-2019 forms, letters of support, etc.).

Advocacy and Training

ISSS also focuses on advocacy for internationals and intercultural training for the USF community.

We are committed to working on campus to promote ethnorelativistic understanding, intercultural communication, and cultural awareness. ISSS accomplishes this goal through training sessions, guest speaking, classroom presentations, and referral resources.