Safe Rides provides free local shuttles to international students. The local shuttle operates much like a free taxi (you need to call for pick up) during limited times (see below).
Please call (660) 562-1245 to schedule a ride to any location in Maryville city limits during these times. You will need to know your address (I.e. 212 N. Walnut, Apt. 3, you need to say, "Please pick me up at Two-One-Two North Walnut, Apartment Three." You can also give your phone number. You need to show your Bearcat Card when they pick you up.
The weekly shuttle operating times are:
||4 p.m - 4 a.m
||10 p.m - 4 a.m
||4 p.m - 4 a.m
||10 p.m - 4 a.m
||10 a.m - 2 p.m
If by any exceptional problem Safe Rides is not capable of providing shuttle service then they will let you know by e-mail or on the website. Please see the Safe Rides site for up to date information.
- This information will be posted in the future. Please continue to check back for any updates. Thank you!
While international students are not eligible for scholarships where a FAFSA form is required, there are several scholarships available for current international students at Northwest. Graduate students should look here to learn more about the Graduate Non-Resident Waiver scholarship based on first semester GPA. Continuing students can visit here to learn more about departmental scholarships.
There are also two dedicated scholaships for international students.
1. Society of International Ambassadors
2. Carolyn Houts Scholarship for African students (arriving summer 2013)
All international students at Northwest Missouri State University will be charged for the university sourced International Student Plan administered by LewerMark upon enrollment. Coverage is effective until August 15 of the following year for ALL students. This insurance coverage continues to work after graduation, transfer or withdrawal from university until the expiry date, August 15. However, students graduating in December and potential spring semester transfer students, may submit a waiver application to the International Affairs office located in the Intercultural International Center (IIC).
Please note: this is a waiver application only. Each case will be evaluated by the Director of International Affairs and waived (or not) on an individual basis.
Health insurance is necessary to help cover the extremely high cost of medical care in the United States. It is imperative to have resources to cover costs of possible accidents or unexpected illnesses. In addition, international students are strongly advised to provide health insurance for any dependents accompanying them to the United States. Plans also are available for a student's spouse and children at additional cost. Students learn about the insurance plan details during orientation and you can learn more at http://www.lewermark.com/nwmissouri/.
The Student Plan administered by LewerMark is a reasonably-priced group insurance plan with provisions for either individuals or families is negotiated specially through the International Affairs Office. See here for cost and policy information.
Travel insurance to cover airline changes, lost baggage, cancellations and delays is suitable to travel here, but no other insurance will be accepted to waive the insurance charge.
NOTE: Students in exchange programs, short term non-degree programs, and government sponsored students (Finnish, ISEP, Saudi, Swedish) need to report to the IIC to report and file their insurance coverage.
Immigration and Legal Information
How to apply for Missouri Driver’s License
- Go to Driver License Bureau located on 423 North Market Street, Maryville, MO (660) 582-5391 to get a Driver’s license manual or download it from http://dor.mo.gov/drivers/dlguide/. This is the book for driving laws in Missouri and the United States. You will have to study this book and pass the written PERMIT test.
Note – In addition to English, Missouri currently administers driver's license exams in Bosnian, Chinese, French, German, Greek, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Russian, Spanish and Vietnamese. If you wish to take the test in one of the above mentioned languages ask about the availability of the driver license manual in that particular language from the employees at the Driver’s License Bureau.
- Obtain a Social Security number . If you have a job on campus you qualify for a Social Security Number. If you do not have job you will have to go to the Social Security Administration Office and get a DENIAL LETTER. The Social Security Administration Office is located on 518 W South Hills Dr., Maryville, MO (877) 833-2731.
- Bring the following documents to the Driver’s License Bureau –
- I-94 (usually stapled inside the passport)
- I-20 (If it is more than 60 days old you will need to come to the IIC and get an updated one)
- Social Security Card or Denial Letter
- Letter of full time enrollment at Northwest (can be obtained from the Registers’ Office , located on the second floor of the Administration Building.
- Proof of Address (Can be a letter sent to you, with your name and current address on it)
- Take the PERMIT test. If you pass you are entitled to a DRIVER PERMIT. You may only drive with some over the age of 21, currently holding a valid driver’s license, present in the car.
- Take the DRIVER test. If you pass you may drive legally in the United States.
- For more information consult the Missouri Department of Revenue, Driver License pagehttp://dor.mo.gov/drivers/
- REMEMBER IN THE UNITED STATES IT IS A SEROUS OFFENCE TO OFFER A BRIBE TO A POLICE OFFICER OR ANY OTHER MEMBER OF THE DRIVERS LICENSE BUREAU. YOU WILL GO TO JAIL!
- If you choose to purchase a car after you get your driver license, remember to make sure you obtain the following documents for the car. The TITLE and INSURANCE for the car. Driving a car without either one of these documents is illegal in the United States.
- All licensed cars will be taxed as personal property on January 1st of each year. This means you will be paying a sum of $50-$150 each year around the month of December.
Maintaining F-1 Status
To "stay in status" follow the simple steps below:
- Report to the DSO (Designated School Official) for Initial Registration in SEVIS upon arriving at the school
- For the first entry for initial school attendance, the school listed on the visa and the I-20 must be the same
- Pursue a “full course of study” at the school listed on the currently valid Form I-20 during every academic session or semester except during official school breaks, or unless approved under a specific exception, in advance, by the DSO
- Make normal progress towards completing the course of study, by completing studies before the expiration of the program completion date on the Form I-20
- Keep Form I-20 valid by following proper procedures for extension of stay
- Keep Form I-20 valid by following proper procedures for change in educational levels of programs of study
- Keep Form I-20 valid by following proper procedures for transfer of schools
- Abide by the F-1 grace period rules, including remaining in the U.S. for no longer than 60 days after completing a full course of study, unless prior to completing the course of study the student has followed procedures for applying for practical training, moving educational levels, or school transfer
- Report a change of address to the DSO within 10 days of the change, so that SEVIS can be updated. You must also change on CatPAWS or at Registrar's Office.
- Abide by rules requirements, such as Special Registration requirements
- Do not work off-campus, unless specifically authorized by the DSO
Reinstatement for F-1
Reinstatement refers to returning to legal status. If you fail to maintain legal status, you have to make an appointment with the IIC and you will guided through the following steps:
- Conditions for approval for reinstatement
- Have not been out of status more than 5 months prior to filing for reinstatement
- No record of repeated violations
- Pursuing education full-time
- Are not engaged in unauthorized employment
- Not deportable on any grounds other than the status violation for which reinstatement is being requested
- Status violation resulted from either:
- Circumstances beyond control
- Failure to apply in a timely fashion for a reduced course load authorized by the DSO, but only if the violation would have been within the DSO’s authority
- Procedures for applying for reinstatement
- Provide the DSO with all the documents necessary to issue a new Form I-20
- Write a letter of explanation addressed to BCIS
- Complete and sign Form I-539
- $195.00 fee
Part-Time Enrollment Authorization
You may enroll part-time IF:
- You are a freshman in your first semester and you are having difficulty with English.
- In your last semester before graduation and are taking all required classes to complete your degree.
- Illness or Medical Condition.
If you have an I-20 and the program completion date (In item 5 on your I-20) is before the date you will graduate, you need to extend your program (aka: Extend my I-20). Please come to the IIC before the date on your I-20 and ask to have your program extended. You will need to schedule an appointment for this meeting.
- Requirements to be eligible for extension of program:
- Contact DSO and update SEVIS before program completion date
- Continually maintained status
- The delay in completion is “caused by compelling academic or medical reasons, such as changes of major or research topics, unexpected research problems, or documented illnesses”
- Academic probation or suspension are not acceptable reasons for program extension
- Requirements to transfer to another school
- Contact current DSO and inform them of two things:
- Intent to transfer
- Complete name of the school to which he or she will transfer
- Must maintain status at current school
- The course of study at the transfer-in school must begin within 5 months of the end of the course of study at the transfer-out school, or the release date set by transfer-out school, whichever is earlier
- For current OPT participants, the course of study must begin within 5 months of the end of OPT, or the release date set by the transfer-out school, whichever is earlier
- Must be eligible for an I-20 at the transfer-in school
- The proper transfer procedures must be followed in SEVIS, within the required deadlines
If you are planning to transfer to another school in the United States, you will need to first contact the other school to apply. Their International Admissions Office will guide you from there. You will be asked to bring a "Transfer Form" to the IIC to Complete. You need to drop this form off at the IIC Front Desk and ask to have the Director of International Affairs (Jeffrey Foot) complete the form. The IIC will send that form directly to the University to which you are applying. If you are applying to several schools, please inform us at the front desk when you drop off the form.
After you have been accepted at the new school, you need to send an e-mail to Jeffrey Foot stating you intend to transfer to the new school along with a scanned copy of your acceptance letter with a program start date listed in the e-mail or on the letter. After this is received, your SEVIS file will be transferred to the new school.
Best of Luck in your new school!
- We are happy you are considering Northwest! Please visit the Admissions website for more information about how to apply. If you have questions about the visa process the Director of International Affairs can answer those for you. Please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
International Students have several options to bring family with you or to visit you. Please read this section to determine which option works for your circumstance and follow the instructions to get the help you need from our office. A good starting place to determine how people should come to the US is through the State Department's travel website.
- Bring a dependent spouse (wife or husband) or child(ren). You will need to assist your dependents to get an F-2 visa from the US Embassy or Consulate nearest you. To begin this process, you will need to request the international affairs office to create an F-2 dependent I-20 for you. Future students should add this information to their application packets. If you are a currently enrolled international student, submit the items (below) to Kathleen Baudino in the IIC in person or mail:
IIC, 800 University Drive
Maryville MO 64468,
- Bank account information showing funds to cover the estimated yearly expenses for each dependent. Calculate this amount by using your estimated costs on your I-20 and add US $10,000 for each dependent. (I.e. For a new grad student and his wife (fall 2011 entrance) the cost would be $19,398 plus $10,000 =$28,489.
- A new Statement of Support form for the same amount (dependents should be supported by finances controlled by the F-1 student, but personal circumstances are taken into the advisement process, please be detailed with your situation for our staff to consider your case intelligently).
- Submit the information page of each dependents passport (should be modern machine readable passports).
- (if delivery needed) Send US$35 bank draft (money order) to the IIC to pay for FedEX shipping
- (if picking up) Go to IIC Front Desk. Please allow 1 full business day to process the F-2 I-20.
- Invite people to see you. Friends or relatives will need to have a tourist visa to enter the USA to visit you for a short time (less than 90 days). A B1/B2 visa is used just for visiting. To get this visa, you can go to the US Embassy or Consulate page nearest you and look for the Visas to the US tab at the top of the page. You will look for the Non-immigrant visas page. Some countries are required to have a tourist visa to visit and some countries are part of the Visa Waiver Program (VWP). You need to determine if they are from a VWP country or not.
If they need to obtain a visa (Non VWP country) prior to coming to the United States, some US Embassies and Consulates require you to get an invitation letter as part of the package needed to apply for a tourist (B1/B2) visa. You can get an invitation letter by filling out the following form: Sign up for Relatives visit request form. After you fill out the form to invite people and submit it to the IIC, the letter can be picked up the following business day at the IIC Front Desk.
Remember: An invitation letter from the IIC is NOT permission to the United States. The U.S. Embassy or Consulate in your country will first decide if your guest can get a visa using the letter and other evidence required. The Port of Entry (i.e. Immigration Official in the Airport/Border) will determine if they will accept the visa.
Work in the USA
While your first priority is studying, you may want to gain important experience and/or earn a little spending money. Working on campus is a great way to do this. Working on campus 20 hours per week during school can pay for living costs, but not for tuition. You should not expect to pay your own way with a job as most student employees earn only $350 per month.
Finding a job is your opportunity to get experience with the American job search process. You may want to start by search for positions by updating your resume by visiting Career Services and search for positions by visiting Student Employment for a list of on campus job opportunities.
Some interesting international student immigration regulations and campus policies will shape your choices:
- All students are able to work on-campus for only 20 hours a week during school
- 40 hours during a school break (vacation)
- Employment opportunities are those positions which support the student body
- Only offered to those who have unforeseen economic hardship, internship with an International Organization or Special Student Relief program
- Student must be issued an EAD (Employment Authorization Document) card from USCIS (US Citizenship and Immigration Services)
- Authorized for 20 hours a week during school
- 40 hours a week during a school break (vacation)
Severe Economic Hardship
- Definition: loss of financial aid or on-campus employment without fault on the part of the student, substantial fluctuations in the value of currency or exchange rate, inordinate increases in tuition and/or living costs, unexpected changes in the financial condition of the students source of support, medical bills, or other substantial and unexpected expenses.
- Contact Dr. Jeffrey Foot to complete the process
- Statement describing the unforeseen hardship situation
- Letter from home stating the change in family circumstances
- Proof of currency devaluation in the students country
- Explain why other employment options are unavailable or insufficient
- Complete Form I-765 (c) (3) (iii)
- Obtain 2 Passport style photos
- $380 fee
CPT allows international students to work off campus in paid positions if the work involved will satisfy requirements for internship credit. Students must be enrolled full time for at least two regular semesters (I.e. Spring and Fall at Northwest Missouri State). Students transferring from other schools should make an appointment with the International Affairs Director to determine eligibility. If the proposed internship (work) satisfies the institutional requirement to be an internship position in your field of study, CPT authorization will be given by the Director of International Affairs. To obtain CPT, please follow the process outlined in Student Procedure below.
Definition: an integral part of an established curriculum
Must provide a letter from the Company stating the location, start date and end date, hours per week, and job description (see below for letter sample)
Must provide enrollment proof or letter from academic advisor stating the integral part this training will provide for the curriculum
Duration: 1 Year less a day. Full-time status of CPT for more than one year will eliminate eligibility for OPT
Available full time during the summer (May to August) or part time during the school year (August to May)
Students must also comply with all full time enrollment requirements in fall and spring to maintain status (i.e. cannot "take a semester off to do an internship.")
Summer CPT authorization is valid anywhere in the United States.
Fall and Spring semester CPT will be authorized for locations within a reasonable drive from Maryville (Des Moines, Kansas City, Lincoln, Omaha, etc.)
All CPT authorizations for paid internships will be processed and approved by the Director of International Affairs.
It is the student’s responsibility to understand if their major requires or recommends an internship. If it does, they are responsible for finding, applying, interviewing, and accepting employment. Employment must begin after CPT is authorized on their I-20. Students should be aware CPT takes advance planning. The job should start at least one week after you have accepted the job offer. International students must also realize all other immigration regulations governing your stay in the United States should be understood for impact and how they support or restrict the CPT experience.
Please refer to the following links to begin the procedure. You may want to print each to take with you accepting a position.
- Receive "OPT Card" by applying for I-765 Employment Authorization Document
- Definition: I-765 EAD is temporary employment authorization under F-1 status for practical training directly related to major area of study
- Duration: 1 Year less a day maximum. Must use within 14 months of graduation (STEM students eligible for extension).
- 90 day unemployment maximum.
HOW TO APPLY: Average application approval time is 90 days. You should apply well in advance of graduation.
- Get a money order for $380 made out to: Department of Homeland Security
- Get 2 new professional passport photos
- Download and electronically complete the I-765 form .
- Make photocopies of all I-20s, passport ID page, US student visa, and I-94
- Master's students: get a letter from the Graduate Office regarding current academic status and expected date of completion of studies.
- Bachelor's students: get a letter from the Registrar's Office regarding current academic status and expected date of completion of studies.
- Bring a $35 check made out to IIC or use our secure online payment form. We will send your OPT card by FedEx (next day delivery in the USA) after it arrives in IIC.
AFTER you have completed the steps above and have a complete packet, make an appointment with the IIC (OPT Office hours are Monday from 8:30 AM to 11:30 AM and Tuesday from 1:30 PM to 4:00 PM) to complete the OPT I-20 and get directions how to send the package to the service center.
NOTE: Your employment card will be mailed to the IIC, and forwarded to you at your new address. We advise all cards to be sent directly to us to avoid lost cards. Friends are not allowed to pick up the card for you and we will need a forwarding address or be in contact with us via e-mail to send your OPT Card to you in your new home. You may NOT work until you receive your OPT Card.
Some interesting immigration regulations:
- You have a total of 90 days of unemployment on OPT (this does not mean you "have 3 months to find a job.")
- You must update employment location and your address with our office you may work until the expiration date on your OPT card.
- You have 60 days after your expiration date to exit the country, receive a new I-20, be in processing for H-1B visa or residency.
If you are injured or severly ill (sick), call 911.
If you are not injured but feel sick and are not sure what you should do, the International Affairs Office recommends you to take the following steps:
- Go to the LewerMark webpage for Northwest to learn about your plan and the doctors and hospitals that are close to you. In Maryville, St. Francis Hospital is in our network.
- Call Nurse Hotline First (FREE) The Nurse Hotline is a FREE service provided by your health insurance. You have already paid for it. This service lets you consult a healthcare professional, talk to them about your problems are and ask them what the right thing to do is. All this is at no extra cost.
For Example –“My stomach hurts what should I do?”
Nurse Hotline: 866-549-5076
- Wellness Center (INCLUDED IN UNIVERSITY FEES – NO FURTHER COST) If you think that you need to physically see a doctor or a nurse. If you have hurt yourself and need medical attention, the next best place would be The University Wellness Center. In case of an emergency you can walk into the Wellness Center and ask to talk with a Doctor. You can also call them ahead of time and set up an appointment. The University Wellness Center is FREE to all Northwest students.
University Wellness Center: 660 562 1348
Wellness Centre Hours of operation: Monday to Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
University Wellness Center Website
- Doctors Appointment ($50) If you have already called the Nurse Hotline or visited the University Wellness Center and believe that you need to speak with a specialized doctor. You can call and make an appointment with a specialized Doctor at St. Francis Hospital. Your student sickness and accident insurance policy may cover some or all of the expenses. For more information on health insurance and what it covers, check out the health insurance tab located right below this one.
Phone: 660 562 2525
2016 South Main Street, Maryville, Missouri 64468
St. Francis Hospital & Health Services Website
- St. Francis Emergency Room ($50) “Going to the Hospital” should only be done in cases of extreme medical emergency. During business hours of 8 to 5, you can go to the drop in clinic located on the right of the main exit. St. Francis Hospital’s Emergency Room is located on the left of the main entrance.
Phone: 660 562 2525
St. Francis Hospital & Health Services Website
To request for an Ambulance
Call - 911
Deadline, April 15, 2013
Were you in the USA at any time
in 2012? (Even if you landed on December 31, 2012 to start school in
January 2013, you will answer yes)
- YES: See below
for next question
Did you have income in 2012?
- NO: If you have been here for less
than 5 years, please print the form 8843 ,
complete, and send it to:
Department of the Treasury
Internal Revenue Service Center
Austin, TX 73301-0215
- YES: If you have been here for less
than 5 years, please complete a tax return (using H&R Block located in Maryville –
it is easy and cheap) and complete
**FORM 8843 HELP**
Only fill out sections
1 and 3 then sign and date the PDF
Sections 1: This will
determine your substantial presence (you will need to know this if you are
filling out a tax return)
Section 3: questions 10:
Dr. Jeffrey Foot, 800 University Drive, UN 2450, Maryville, MO 64468 (660)
Sign and date the PDF at the
bottom of the second page
Here are some
for International students wondering about income taxes:
You may also
try this link for more information but it is a private company
between Residents and Nonresidents
If you have been here for more than
5 years, please come and see Jeff at IIC.
Students planning a short term
visit (less than 5 months) outside of the United States should follow this checklist:
- Are you travelling
to your home country or another country (NOT your home country)? If you are going to another country, go to the website of that country’s Embassy in
the USA to find out about visa requirements before you travel.
- Make sure your
passport is valid for at least 6 months after departure
- Get a travel
signature on your I-20. (The IIC Front Desk will process this for you).
- Ensure you have a
valid visa to reenter the USA (see section below)
- Check to make sure
your bill is paid and you are registered for classes in the following semester.
Note: If your visa will expire
or is expired you do not need to travel home just to renew it.
You are allowed to maintain status in the USA past your visa expiry date. For more
questions about F-1 visas and Duration of Status, visit http://travel.state.gov/visa/temp/info/info_1298.html
All F-1 visas holders are
admitted to the US for Duration of Status (F-1 D/S).
Sample of I-94 indicating this:
However, if you plan to travel
home and you have an expired visa or it will expire while you out of the country, then you must renew your visa to enter the USA again.
Renew your visa
Renewing is very similar to
getting a new visa; you need to show the same documents plus some new information.
Go the Non-immigrant visa
section of the US Embassy or Consulate closest to your home in the country of your citizenship or residency:
Each Embassy or Consulate has
some basic procedures, but the best information is found at the Embassy Consulate closest to your home. Sample of US Embassies and Consulates
visa renewal pages:
- All F-1 visa
applicants need to fill out DS 160 and 156 applications.
- Show I-901 fee
receipt (SEVIS Fee). If you have maintained status then your old receipt will work. If you have been out of status or out of the US for more than 5 months,
then you need
to pay again.
- Updated I-20
- Other documents as
From Northwest you will need to
request the following documents:
- Get a travel
signature on your I-20. (The IIC Front Desk will process this for you).
- Show enrollment in
classes after you return. (A CatPAWS printout is fine)
- Show official
transcripts of current academic performance (Transcript Request)
If, after reading this page
closely, you still have questions, please contact the Director of International Affairs with the Subject
Line: Visa renewal question.
Students who are returning for their next semester, please click here for current international shuttle schedule.
NEW or RETURNING (took a semester or longer break), please click here and click on Airport Shuttle pull down tab.