Designated School Official (DSO):  A trained member of GW’s staff, who signs documents, provides legal advising. All ISO advisors are DSOs, with authority to grant F benefits, work authorizations, extensions, transfers.

SEVIS: Student and Exchange Visitor Information System. This is the reporting database your ARO/RO will use to report your biographical, employment and enrollment information as required by U.S. law.

US Visa: Document issued by the U.S. Department of State that gives permission to travel to U.S. and requests admission. While your visa must be valid at time of any (re-)entry, it’s okay to expire while in the U.S.

I-94 Card: A visa holder’s official registration document, your I-94 card is evidence of legal admission to U.S., and it indicates immigration status and how long student may remain in U.S.

Form I-20:  A valid I-20 indicates your major, level of study, funds and personal information. If there are any changes in this information, it must be reported to an F-1 Advisor at ISO.

DHS: The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is a cabinet department of the U.S. federal government. DHS’s primary responsibilities includes protecting the United States of America. DHS has three bureaus of importance to you as a student:

SEVP: The Student and Exchange Visitor Program, which hosts and maintains SEVIS.

USCIS: United States Citizenship and Immigration Service, which grants benefits, applications, petitions and other immigration-related requests.

CBP: Customs and Border Patrol, a law enforcement agency which conducts inspections at U.S. ports of entry and enforces trade, customs and immigration regulations.

ICE: Immigration and Customs Enforcement, a law enforcement agency which is responsible for investigations related to immigration and customs.