International Student Hub

Welcome to the International Student Hub!

Sacred Heart Seminary and School of Theology (SHSST) is located in Franklin, Wisconsin, just outside of the City of Milwaukee. Sacred Heart serves laity, religious and seminarians through our English and Culture Studies, Hispanic Ministry Preparation, Master of the Arts, and Program for Priestly Formation.

Preparing for travel to the U.S.

What to Bring to the Seminary:

Clothing

SHSST has a standard dress code. Language students may wear appropriate cultural attire to class.  Formal dress is required for Sunday mass and special events. Students may wear semi-formal clothing (dress pants, collared dress shirt and black dress shoes) to classes, mass and prayer. Outside of these times, casual dress is allowed. You may view the full clothing policy here Clothing Policy.

 

Luggage

Prior to beginning your travels, contact your airline to determine how many bags you may bring and if you will need to pay additional fees for checked bags or carry on luggage. You may also check if your airline has any specific COVID 19 regulations like needed a negative COVID test, face masks or face shields. It is also good to note if you may bring a pillow or snacks with you for your flight.

 

Leaving Your Country

COVID 19

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, please call or go to the website for the US Embassy in your country. Make sure to know and follow the guidelines provided for COVID 19 in your country. You may be required to quarantine prior to travel. You could be required to have a COVID-19 vaccine or just proof of a negative COVID-19 test. The rules are different for each location and may change over time.

 

Entering the U.S.

You must have your I 20 with original signature with you when you arrive at the US Border. Keep it somewhere safe with your passport and student visa.  Do not pack it away in your luggage as you must provide it at your point of entry into the US. If you are a resident of Canada or Bermuda, you do not need to have a student visa. You will just need your passport and original copy of your I 20.

Priestly Formation and Other Graduate Level Students

Students that are not fluent in English may be required to complete language classes prior to the start of seminary work. Other students may find language classes or accent modification classes may be required or helpful. Sacred Heart is home to the English and Culture Studies program. Priests and other religious come from all over the world to learn English here. International student make-up more than 20% of our student population and we expect to have even more international students choosing to study with us.

 

Priestly Formation and Other Graduate Level Students

Your course schedule will be provided to you before the semester begins. Seminarians will have a Program Plan that will outline all of their courses, major milestones and anticipated graduation date. Your course plan will be set according to the plan you have established with your sponsor or vocational director. Other graduate level students may follow a cohort, or will be able to choose courses before the start of the term.

 

Seminarian Class Schedule and Materials

Classes are held on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday, from 9am until 5pm. Wednesday is formation day and there is prayer and mass on campus. You may choose or will be assigned courses each semester, according to your program, degree plan and/or language progression. Books will be available for purchase from the Sacred Heart Bookstore.

Language Students

Guide for Language Students

This guide will help to answer questions about the seminary and English and Culture Studies Program. It is a resource that can be used as you prepare to come to the seminary, and also after classes begin. You may download the guide here.

 

Language Assessments

During the first week, language students will complete several language assessments. These are used to determine the appropriate courses for grammar, reading, writing and oral communication. After the assessments, class schedules are created and books will be issued.

 

Fall and Spring Language Classes

Classes are scheduled on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from nine in the morning until lunchtime. There is an additional class after lunch. Wednesday is formation day and there is prayer and mass on campus.

 

Summer Sessions

In summer, students have a weekly field trip day, and classes the other four days of the week. Class start at nine in the morning and break for lunch at noon. There is a final class at one o’clock.

 

Tutoring

Volunteer tutors visit campus every week to help ECSP students with their language skills. Each ECSP student will be paired with a tutor. The student and the tutor will set times to meet for tutoring each week.

Support for International Students

If you find that you need more time for your classes or that you are having difficulty adjusting to learning in the US, we are here to help. You may talk with your instructors or advisor for additional help. You may also request an accommodation through the Registrar’s Office. The accommodation form is discussed in the SHSST Portal and Forms.

 

Higher Ed Immigration Portal: higheredimmigrationportal.org Provides resources and data for immigrant, refugee, DACA, undocumented, and other international students.

 

National Association of Professional-Graduate Students: nagps.org Group that works to improve graduate studies in the US.

 

The Presidents’ Alliances on Higher Education: presidentsalliance.org Alliance of US colleges and universities. Works to explain how public policies effect international students.

 

Please visa our Visa Hub for information about student visas in the U.S. Links to other helpful resources may be found below. You may also contact our International Immigration Specialist at lbates@shsst.edu.

Other Resources and Forms

Driver License Information

Prior to your travel, it is recommended that you obtain an International Driving Permit or have your current driver license translated to English. According to the Wisconsin Department of Transportation (DOT), if you are from a country that is part of the United Nations Convention of Road Traffic or is party to the Geneva Convention, you may use your current driver’s license to drive in the US for up to one year after you arrive in the US. You are allowed to drive a rented or personally owned vehicle.  A list of these countries is provided on the DOT website: https://wisconsindot.gov/Pages/dmv/license-drvs/how-to-apply/foreign.aspx. After one year, you are required to obtain a Wisconsin Driver’s License.

 

How to Apply for a Driver’s License

Driver licenses are issued by the Wisconsin Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). View a list of DMV service centers by clicking here.  To apply for a Wisconsin Driver License, you will complete form MV3001. You may schedule an appointment or you may go in during open hours and wait to apply for a license.

 

What You Will Need to Apply for a License

To receive a Wisconsin Driver License, you must prove your legal status in the US.  If you are a non-resident immigrant, you must also prove you will be in Wisconsin for at least six more months. This may all be done by providing the DOT with a copy of your I20. You do not need a letter from SHSST. You will need a photo ID. A passport or driver license from your country can be accepted.

 

SHSST Portal and Forms

Once you have enrolled in classes, you will have access to the SHSST Portal. In the portal, will find forms for international students and ECSP student. For your convenience, we have provided some of our most important forms here.

 

Accommodations

An accommodation allows you extra assistance. You may request to use a dictionary, to have more time to complete assignments or other types help. A course load reduction is also an option. You may elect to take fewer classes during your first year in the U.S.

 

Program Change Form

ECSP students requesting a change in their program date must complete a Program Change Form. Once completed, the form should be submitted to the SEVIS Specialist for review. The SEVIS Specialist will forward the form to the responsible department administrators for approval and will then make the necessary changes in SEVIS. Students will receive notification of the approval, denial or deferment of their request via Populi and their student email account. If a change in their program plan or I20 is required, students will receive these documents as well.