Immigration Advice and Resources
Cornell offers many resources to support our international community. On this page, you'll find answers, advice, and allies for your immigration-related concerns, including campus resources for internationals, immigration emergency aid, university statements of support, and more.Learn more about how the Office of the Vice Provost for International Affairs advocates for
Cornell's international community. Find answers about university plans, travel and visa status, and employment rules on International Services' COVID-19 FAQ pages for international students and faculty and staff.
Support at Cornell
Cornell’s Office of Global Learning International Services is here to help students and scholars from around the world thrive at Cornell. Talk with International Services staff about general immigration information including visas and jobs, finding your niche in Ithaca, campus resources, and more. Get advice from International Services.
If you are a current student, faculty, or staff member experiencing an immigration-related emergency, find out how to get the help you need at any hour on International Services' Stopped at the Border page.
Cornell Law School Clinical Programs provide free immigration legal advice and/or referrals for Cornell students on specific issues such as asylum and naturalization. Income guidelines may apply. Reach out to the clinical faculty team by email at email@example.com or call the clinic at +1-607-255-4196.
Cornell Law’s immigration clinic handles immigration cases for the Cornell community. Contact Jaclyn Kelley-Widmer, associate clinical professor of law, by email to discuss your case.
In addition, the Legal Information Institute at Cornell Law School publishes free online law materials to help people understand the law.
Resources for undocumented and DACA student support can be found on the Student and Campus Life website.
H1-B Lottery and Wage Prioritization Rules Vacated
On September 15, Cornell-supported lawsuits to counter H1-B immigration rulings set by the U.S. Department of State and U.S. Department of Labor to end existing H-1B lottery procedures and imposed new H-1B wage levels for international employees at the university have been vacated. Learn more about the victory.
Spring 2020 SEVP Guidance Continued for 2021–22 Academic Year
On June 1, 2021, the U.S. State Department updated the National Interest Exceptions for F-1, J-1, and M-1 travelers from countries that still have COVID-related travel bans. The following countries and regions are currently included: China, Brazil, India, Iran, Ireland, the Schengen area, South Africa, and the United Kingdom. Students and scholars subject to these proclamations due to their presence in a restricted country qualify for an NIE only if their academic program begins August 1 or later. Students may enter the U.S. no earlier than 30 days before the start of their academic studies.
COVID-19 Travel Bans
There have been several presidential proclamations limiting travel to the U.S. for those who have been in countries with greater coronavirus risk within the past 14 days. See a comprehensive list of COVID-19 travel restrictions.
Presidential Proclamation Suspending Entry of Chinese Researchers
Presidential Proclamation 10043 was published on May 29, 2020, and remains in force. The proclamation only applies to certain graduate students and postgraduate researchers. Read our May 2020 message to Chinese students.
International Services FAQ
Find more answers to questions about student travel rules, including National Interest Exceptions and travel bans. Faculty and staff, please visit the scholar FAQ.
University Statements of Support (select)
- Standing Against Hatred and Bias, President Martha Pollack (May 26, 2021)
- Statement on Anti-Asian Violence, President Martha Pollack (March 17, 2021)
- President Pollack condemns events at U.S. Capitol, President Martha Pollack (Jan. 6, 2021)
- Compliance with Section 117 of the Higher Education Act, John Carberry, Senior Director of Media Relations and News (Oct. 21, 2020)
- Update on racial justice initiatives at Cornell, President Martha Pollack and Vice Provost Avery August (Sept. 4, 2020)
- Additional actions to create a more just and equitable Cornell, President Martha Pollack (July 16, 2020)
Explore the complete archive of university statements.
Guidance and Counseling
- Part of Cornell Health, Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) includes the Let’s Talk program. Talk confidentially with a trained healthcare professional and find support for stress, loneliness, anxiety, depression, adjustment challenges, relationship difficulties, questions about identity, managing an existing mental health condition, or other issues. Call CAPS at +1-607-255-5155 to speak with a staff member.
- Cornell's Office of Academic Diversity Initiatives offers general advising on personal and academic support, as well as planning for academic and professional aims and referrals for undocumented students as part of the trailblazers program.
- Cornell's Office of Graduate Student Life serves the Cornell community in many capacities: discussing student concerns, providing available resources and services, and sharing options for handling difficult academic and personal situations. Contact Janna Lamey to identify appropriate resources.
- The staff in the Dean of Students office is available for support, advice, and guidance in navigating various circumstances. Contact the office by email or call +1-607-255-1115.
- Cornell's Faculty and Staff Assistance Program offers free, confidential guidance and support to benefits-eligible employees and their partners to address issues that may be affecting their personal lives and job satisfaction or performance. This resource is part of Cornell's broad commitment to foster and support the mental health and well-being of the campus community.
Housing in Ithaca
- If you're an international student concerned that visa issues will limit your ability to travel to your home abroad during university breaks, on-campus housing may be an option. Send an email in confidence to find out more.
- International Services provides general housing information on its website. Visit Your First Week and Student Resources.
Support from Off-Campus
Hotline to Combat Coronavirus Hate Crimes and Xenophobic Rhetoric
New York's Attorney General Letitia James created a hotline to report hate crimes and bias-based incidents. The hotline comes in the wake of rising reports of harassment and assaults, as well as rhetoric against Asian Americans during the COVID-19 pandemic. The attorney general urges those experiencing hate crimes and bias report an incident by email or by calling +1-800-771-7755. Learn more about the initiative.
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services provides updates on official government policies related to immigration into the United States.
- Informed Immigrant offers important resources for immigrants and allies.
- American Civil Liberties Union provides information and resources to help defend the individual rights and liberties guaranteed by the Constitution and laws of the United States.
- Miller Mayer, an Ithaca-based immigration law firm, provides immigration policy news and free webinars on legal topics.
- Tompkins County Immigrant Rights Coalition is a network for immigrant community empowerment.