Student ServicesInternational Student Services

International Student Services

International Student Services provides holistic support services to international students as they actualize their full potential while at Concordia University. International Student Services is focused on assisting international students in successfully accomplishing their goals.

Immigration Information

How to Maintain Your F-1 Student Status

It is the responsibility of each F-1 student to maintain status while in the United States by complying with the terms and conditions of F-1 student status.

More information can be found below. Please contact your DSO at ISS with questions.

Complete Your SEVIS Registration Appointment

You must be registered in SEVIS within 30 days of the program start date (for new students). This is done by attending the document check and SEVIS registration session during International Student Orientation.

Register Full Time Each Semester

You must pursue a full course of study each semester while enrolled. Full time is considered as follows at Concordia:

  • 12 credits for undergraduate students
  • 6 credits for graduate students

Note: Students on the SACM scholarship must register for a minimum of 9 credits as per SACM policy.

Students are allowed to take a reduced course load (RCL) if they have a qualifying reason and provided they obtain authorization BEFORE dropping below minimum credits. Please see the RCL form for further details and instructions.

Make Normal Progress Toward Completing Your Course of Study

Students should follow up frequently with their academic advisor to ensure they are completing coursework for both general requirements and for specific major and/or degree. In doing so, you will avoid taking unnecessary courses and make normal progress toward completing your course of study.

Contact ISS to complete the program extension and get an updated I-20. This must be done BEFORE the expiration date on the I-20.

Keep Your Form I-20 and SEVIS Record Updated

You must communicate changes to our office so that we may update your record. Changes include:

  • Change in your major (undergrads)
  • Change in your program (grads)
  • Change of address
  • Change to visa status e.g. becoming a Permanent Resident, changing to F2
  • Change to your dependents’ status
  • Plan to change schools
Employment

To be eligible for any type of employment you must maintain continuous and lawful F-1 status and receive authorization BEFORE you begin employment. Students in F-1 status may begin working on campus once they have completed a document check with an advisor at ISS. This is generally done as part of international student orientation.

Curricular Practical Training (CPT)

CPT is authorization granted to F-1 students to obtain employment or an internship off campus. To be eligible, students must be in F-1 status for one academic year prior and the job/internship must be “…an integral part of an established curriculum” and “directly related to the student’s major area of study.”

Students must also have a job offer letter at the time of application.

For more information and to apply for CPT, please visit the ISS Portal.

Optional Practical Training (OPT)

OPT is work authorization granted to F-1 students upon completing their course of study which allows 12 months of employment in the U.S. To be eligible for OPT students must be in their final semester of study, and should apply no more than 90 days prior to their program end date and 60 days after.

For more information and to apply for OPT, please visit the ISS Portal.

On Campus Employment

F-1 students are permitted to work on-campus. Students may find a job by attending the on-campus job fairs and consulting the Handshake job board. Students will follow up with the Human Resources department to finalize employment. Contact ISS for information on requesting a Social Security Number.

Travel Outside the United States
  • At least 3 business days before traveling, renew your I-20 travel signature with a DSO at ISS.
  • Be sure to travel with your most recent I-20, valid visa, passport valid 6 months into the future, financial documentation matching your I-20, and unofficial transcript/class schedule as proof of registration.

Please note: If you will be traveling outside the United States for longer than 5 months, be sure to meet with your DSO at ISS before withdrawing from classes to discuss a Leave of Absence.

Student Resources

Resources for Child Care

There are several options for child care around the Twin Cities. Options include private in-home care or public child care centers. Here in Minnesota child care providers attain a license issued by the state government. It may be important to inquire about a child care centers qualifications before registering your child for that center. The following is a list of child care centers:

Hand in Hand Child Care Center at Concordia University
It is the philosophy of Hand in Hand Child Care Center that young children learn most effectively when they have the opportunity to explore their environment and experience a variety of materials and situations while they play. We also believe in a responsive, developmental approach to early childhood learning which emphasizes that each child develops at their own rate and that progress is measured individually rather than in comparison to other children in the group. Contact Lacey Wellens at (651) 641-8491 or wellens@csp.edu to learn more about Hand in Hand Child Care Center.

KinderCare Learning Centers
KinderCare is a licensed child care provider with a variety of locations throughout the Twin Cities. KinderCare serves kids and parents in communities around the nation. This kind of scale and depth of experience helps us evaluate best practices and quickly put new findings, curriculum and programs in place, for the maximum benefit of every child. To learn more visit www.kindercare.com.

The Goddard Schools
These schools offer year round programs for preschool children. The Goddard School uses the most current, academically endorsed methods to ensure that children have fun while learning the skills they need for long-term success in school and in life. To learn more visit www.goddardschool.com.

Banking

A US bank account will make managing your finances easier. Once you choose a bank, they will ask you for certain information to open the account possibly including a photo identification, your mailing address, money to deposit, and other personal information. Some banks may ask for your Social Security Number (SSN). If you do not yet have an SSN, you can request a letter for your bank through the ISS Portal.

Be sure to monitor your bank account regularly. Ask your bank about any account or ATM fees.

Twin Cities Shopping Resources

Target: Recommended Shopping and Pharmacy

  • Most stores have photo processing centers and pharmacies. SuperTarget stores include in-store bakery, deli, meat, and produce sections. There are stores across the United States. Their headquarters is in Minnesota. All Target store locations are popular for Concordia University students.
  • Store Hours:
    • Monday-Friday: 8:00 a.m.-10:00 p.m.
    • Saturday: 8:00 a.m.-10:00 p.m.
    • Sunday: 10:00 a.m.-8:00 p.m.
  • Address: 1300 University Ave W, St. Paul, MN 55104. This store has a Pharmacy, Optical, Photo Center, Target Clinic, Grocery and Starbucks.
  • To get there: Target is located within walking distance of Concordia heading north on Hamline Ave.

Groceries

 Lunds & Byerlys

  • Minnesota owned and operated organic and specialty food specialty store. The St. Paul location has a pharmacy.
  •  Store Hours: 6:00 am – midnight 
  • Address: 2128 Ford Parkway, St. Paul, MN 55116
  • To get there: Map your bus route at: www.metrotransit.com
  • Visit: www.lundsandbyerlys.com

 Kowalski’s

  • Minnesota owned and operated organic and local food specialty store.
  • Store Hours: 6:00 am – midnight 
  • Address: 1261 Grand Avenue, St. Paul, MN 55105
  • To get there: Map your bus route at: www.metrotransit.com
  • Visit: www.kowalskis.com

 Cub Foods

  • Currently operates 73 stores in Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois and Iowa, with 58 of those stores located in the Minneapolis/St. Paul metro area; offers organic produce and some specialty foods.
  • Store Hours: Open 24 hours, 7 days a week. 
  • Address: 1440 University Avenue West, St. Paul, MN 55104
  • To get there: Map your bus route at: www.metrotransit.com 
  • Visit: www.Cubfoods.com

Shopping

Mall of America

 Rosedale Center

  • Variety of stores and restaurants.
  • Store Hours: Monday-Saturday 10:00 am-9:00 pm; Sunday: 11:00 am-6:00 pm
  • Address:  10 Rosedale Center, Roseville, MN 55113
  • To get there: Map your bus route at: www.metrotransit.com
  • Visit: www.myrosedale.com

New Furniture

Ikea

Sponsored International Student Program

Concordia University is proud to provide specialized support services to international sponsored students and their sponsors. A sponsored international student has typically been selected by a government, organization, or company to pursue academic study while receiving a financial scholarship.

Services unique to sponsored international students include:

  • Academic advising and support
  • Immigration advising and support
  • Document processing
  • Fostering relationships between the student, sponsor, and the university

 


Meet Our Staff

Tiffanie Loeb Schneider

Director of International Student Services

Colleen Cahill

Coordinator of International Student Services

Drew Boatman

International Academic Advisor

Katie Jabri

Assistant Director of International Admissions and Partnerships


Meet Our Students

Mohammed Aldossary

Mohammed Aldossary is a 2016 finance major from Dammam, Saudi Arabia. He was drawn to the financial world for a number of reasons. “I love to analyze things. As a finance major, you get the chance to analyze the real-life U.S. stock market. Before we did any investment, we had to analyze what is going on.”

Today, he uses the analyzation skills he sharpened at CSP in his work as a human resources operation partner for Halliburton, a multi-national oilfield service company. Though the corporation is headquartered in Houston, Texas, Mohammed’s work takes him across the globe and his role is mainly based out of Halliburton’s Saudi Arabia office. “I use my analyzation skills for cases and investigations that require us to make the right decision.”

Aldossary is grateful for his professors at CSP and the role they played in the educational experience that changed his life.  “The professors always offered help. We learned academically and we also learned about life. They do not feel like professors – they feel more like family,” he explained.

During his time at Concordia, Aldossary became “Six Sigma Black Belt” certified received his PMP certification. His longer-term goals include continuing to build his finance and human resources foundation and potentially operate his own business someday.

His advice for current and prospective students is to keep an open mind. “If you want to be successful, be open to other people. Always ask for help. Everyone will help – especially at Concordia. They will not stop until they make you a successful person. They will work with you day and night until you get there.”

Luis Victoria

Hailing from the Dominican Republic, Luis Victoria is working toward his master’s in sport management and is an inside sales representative for the Minnesota United Football Club (MNUFC). A former college baseball player, Luis knew that he wanted to transition his experience as an athlete into a future career path. We sat down with him to discuss what he feels creates a quality academic experience and how he draws from his CSP experience every day.

Q: What do you think creates a quality academic experience?
A: Professors and academic advisors are the most important pieces in a quality academic experience. Because of them, I have not only enjoyed my academic experience thus far, but I have exponentially incremented my written communication skills in English. They have guided me through all of the academic processes during the course of my program, allowing me to fully grasp what the sports management program has to offer.

Q: What internship/volunteer opportunities have you participated in? How do you feel those experiences have prepared you for professional success and a career after graduation?
A: I interned with the Athletics Department at Concordia. This internship was my first formal job in sports as a former athlete. As an intern, I was able to gain hands-on experience in all of the departments that take part when running a Division II program. At the moment of obtaining my internship, I had no idea as to what I wanted to do for a career. Thanks to my internship with Nicole Grimit and Reagan McAthie, I was able to discover my career path as a sports manager. I discovered that I wanted to be in professional sports which lead me to my newest position with the MNUFC.

Q: Choose a moment that could sum up what you value most about your time at Concordia so far.
A: It would be this moment getting interviewed for this. To me, this means that all the hard work that I have put into this program, school, and my life, in general, has paid off. It gives me the confidence that I am on the right track and that I should be very proud of my accomplishments. Moreover, I could not have gotten here without the help of all of my instructors, my advisors, and the rest of the people that I have met at Concordia, including the Office of International Student Services. All of this is because of them and meeting them is what I value most about my time at Concordia.

Contact the Office of International Student Services

  • Phone: 651-641-8883
  • Email: iss@csp.edu
  • In Person: Luther Hall 116
  • Hours: 8:00 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Monday – Friday

International Admissions

In our ever-global world there's no better place than Concordia to prepare you with the culturally dynamic and rich experiences that you'll need.

International Admissions

Accepted International Students

If you have been accepted to Concordia be sure to complete the next steps.

Accepted International Students

International Student Services Portal

Find important immigration information, make immigration and letter requests, upload your documents, and view announcements.

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English Language Lab

English Language Lab (ELL) provides free English language support services for non-native English speakers.

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