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Glossary

DHS (Department of Homeland Security)
The agency prevents and deters terrorist attacks while protecting against and responding to threats and hazards to the U.S. nation. Ensures safe and secure borders, welcomes lawful immigrants and visitors, and promotes the free-flow of commerce.

DS-2019 (Certificate of Eligibility for Exchange Visitor Status)
It is a U.S. government form that is issued by a school to a student in order to apply for a J-1 visa to come to the United States as a Exchange Student, Scholar, or Researcher

I-20 (Certificate Of Eligibility for a Non-immigrant (F-1) Student Status)
It is a U.S. government form that is issued to a student so that they may apply for an F-1 Visa to come to the United States to study full-time and seek a degree.

I-94 (Arrival-Departure Record)
A small card that shows the date you arrived in the United States and the "Admitted Until" date, the date when your authorized period of stay expires. You will receive an USCIS Form I-94 or I-95 from an USCIS inspector when arriving in the United States border port-of-entry

INS (Former United States Immigration and Naturalization Service)
was a part of the United States Department of Justice and handled legal and illegal immigration and naturalization. It ceased to exist as a whole entity on March 1 2003

Passport
A passport is a travel document that serves as the ultimate form of proof for a person's citizenship. Passports are issued by the appropriate authoritative power of a country's government.

POE (Port of Entry)
To carry out DHS’s inspection requirements, the Attorney General, through the USCIS Commissioner, has designated ports of entry for foreign nationals seeking to enter the U.S. by boat, plane, or by land transportation.

SEVIS (Student and Exchange Visitor Information System)
SEVIS is an internet-based method for keeping track of international students and scholars as will as their dependents in the United States, created by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS)

SEVP (Student and Exchange Visitor Program)
The Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) is the reengineered nonimmigrant student and exchange visitor (F,M, & J visa categories) process, converting what is currently a manual procedure into an automated process.

Status
After the immigration inspector at the port of entry determines you are admissible to the US, an immigration status is granted, which is shown on your I-94 card and your I-20 (for F-1) or DS-2019 (for J-1). (Most of you will have either an F-1 or J-1 student status, or J-1 visiting scholar status). In most situations, your visa type and immigration status are the same, unless you have changed your immigration status after entering the US.

USCIS (United States Citizenship and Immigration Services)
USCIS is responsible for the administration of immigration and naturalization adjudication functions and establishing immigration services policies and priorities.

USICE (United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement)
Enforces U.S. immigration and customs laws in order to protect the United States against terrorist attacks. ICE does this by targeting illegal immigrants: the people, money and materials that support terrorism and other criminal activities.

USCBP (United States Customs and Border Protection)
U.S. Customs and Border Protection primary mission is to prevent terrorism and terrorist weapons from entering the U.S., while facilitating the entry of legitimate trade and travelers.

VISA
A visa is an authority issued by the Embassy/Consulate of a country that permits a traveler to visit that particular country. The majority of visas are stamped inside your passport. Visas are issued with specific limitations regarding purpose of visit, length of stay, validity of visa, etc.