Working With OIPS in Spring 2023

The Office of International Programs and Services will be expanding the in-person office hours to Monday - Friday from 8:30 am to 5:00 pm.  For the convenience of students, faculty, scholars, and community members, many services will remain online, but available when in-person is needed. 

Visit the OIPS Online Services page to find out more about how to meet with an advisor and find OIPS events. 

If you decide to visit the OIPS office during our normal operating hours, we encourage you to take the daily COVID Health Check and review the OIPS Vaccine and Testing page, which includes helpful information on George Mason Universitys vaccine and quarantine requirements and links to Student Health Services information.

What Can I Do By Phone, Email?, or Virtually?

Virtual or Phone Appointments for almost any student or faculty immigration concern.  Please be sure you are able to access a computer to be able to view the information as the advisor speaks with you. Call 703.993.2970 to set up your appointment.  Please be sure that you will be able to meet professionally with few interruptions from noise or family members.

Virtual Walk-in Hours are set up for you to come in for a quick 5-minute advising session. Walk-in hours will take place on Wednesdays & Thursdays from 1:30 PM-3:15 PM EST. Please visit: to attend the OIPS Walk-in Hours.

Email Advising:  You may find your answers on the OIPS Web Page under OIPS Self Service Center

Graduate Admission I-20 Requests, Transfer In, Graduate Student Deferrals:

On-Campus and Curricular Practical Training Employment, Program Extension, Reinstatements to Student Status, Change of Status to F-1, Transfer Out, Reduced Course Loads, and General Questions:, or

INTO Mason Student F1 Visa status questions:

Leave of Absence and Return to the U.S., Course Load Requirements, Last Semester Reduced Course Load Advising:

Optional Practical Training, STEM Optional Practical Training Advising:

J-1 Student Advising:

H-1B and PR Advising:,

What can I do in the OIPS Self-Service Center?

  • J Academic Training Workshop and Evaluation
  • Cap Gap I-20 Request
  • Concurrent Enrollment, Family Invitation Instructions, Verification of Status Letters
  • F-2 Dependent Request Form
  • I-20, DS-2019 Reprint and Travel Signature with Secure Email, First Class or E-ship Mailing
  • International Student check in Form
  • Online OPT Workshop, Instructions, and OPT Request Form (New)
  • OPT/STEM OPT Online Update Form (For Students on OPT)
  • Program Extension, Reduced Course Load Last Semester
  • OIPS Withdrawal (Leave of Absence) and Return Forms
  • STEM OPT Request Form and Instructions, Evaluation(s)
  • Transfer Out
  • Click HERE to access the OIPS Self-Service Center pag

Employment Workshops

The Office of International Programs and Services offers a variety of employment workshops for international students and scholars:

  • Online OPT workshop: This online workshop for F-1 students is offered throughout the year.  Click here to request access.
  • Online Academic Training workshop: This online workshop for J-1 students is offered throughout the year.  Click here to learn more.
  • Immigration Options and Beyond workshop: This face-to-face workshop about H-1B, pathways to legal permanent residency (Green Card), and other employment visas for international students, faculty and scholars is offered in Fall and Spring semesters.  Click here to learn more.

Graduation Process and Beyond

Graduation is not an automatic process. Students should apply to graduate no later than the application deadline set by the Office of the University Registrar. You must be in good financial standing with the University to receive your diploma. In addition, students in F-1 status MUST apply for a Last Semester of Study Reduced Course Load (RCL) in his/her last semester if fewer courses (less than full-time) are needed and required to complete the course of study. Click here to learn more about the graduation process and Last Semester of Study Reduced Course Load (RCL).

Students in F-1 status can engage in OPT after graduation (post-completion OPT).  You do NOT need an employment offer to apply for OPT.  Please note that you need to apply for post-completion OPT in your final semester.  The process can take up to four months.  Click here to learn more about OPT eligibility, OPT application process, timelines and deadlines.  

We advise students to review the graduation process web page and/or the OPT web page BEFORE you meet with an OIPS advisor.  In most cases, the information on the web pages will answer your question(s).

Other Links:

OIPS Data Report

Facts and figures about international students, faculty and scholars.

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Travel Signatures

Traveling abroad during the break? Don't forget to request a travel signature from OIPS.

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Donate to OIPS

Your financial support makes a difference in our students' experience at Mason!

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