At Sacred Heart, we understand the diverse needs of our international students and their sponsors. Our Intercultural Preparation for Ministry Department (IPM) provides cultural and language support. Our International Student Services Specialist, part of IPM, assists students and sponsors as they navigate the immigration process from application to the seminary, through vocational placement. Immigration Connection helps our sponsors communicate and connect, plan and prepare.
Communicate and Connect
Sponsors receive a Quarterly Connection to explain any changes in immigration guidelines and keep them up to date.
The Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) sets guidelines for international students. When there is a significant change in SEVP guidelines or immigration policy, our sponsors receive a Quick Connect email. This helps our sponsors respond to the change and prepare as necessary.
Sponsors are invited to Connect in our annual workshop, held virtually each fall. Our 2021 Connect focused on the Nonimmigrant Religious Worker Visa (R-1) and postgraduation Optional Practical Training (OPT).
Sacred Heart has an expansive website with pages dedicated to international students and immigration.
International Student Hub: The International Student Hub has resources for students in any stage of their seminary experience.
Visa Hub: The Visa Hub links students to answers about their visa and immigration status.
Plan and Prepare
Here are some of the ways that Immigration Connection helps our sponsors plan for their seminarians.
An immigration plan is provided for students and seminarians that have a student visa. This plan highlights scheduled periods for practical training, like propaedeutic, pastoral or novitiate semesters. It is important to know when CPT (Curricular Practical Training) is needed so students remain in good immigration standing when learning off campus. The plan is created by our International Student Services Specialist who, as the Principal School Official for SEVP, authorizes practical learning and other program changes.