What is the Berkeley International Office Services Fee and to whom does it apply?
This is a fee that is assessed to international students for services rendered to them by Berkeley International Office (BIO). It will be assessed to degree-seeking international students in F or J status who are sponsored by the University of California, Berkeley, excluding doctoral and UCEAP exchange students.
What is the purpose of the fee?
The fee will cover the required immigration advising and reporting services provided by BIO, as well as to support the services that support the international student experience.
How much is the fee and when is it applied?
$56 per semester for the academic year 2018-2019. The fee will also be applied during Summer 2019 for degree seeking students who are sponsored by BIO for summer only.
What specifically would the fee cover?
The fee will be used to maintain and improve upon existing services (issuing visa documents, advising, meeting SEVIS reporting requirements in a timely manner) and wait times. The fee will also be used to expand resources to help with academic retention, and to offer a variety of services on specific topics such as career preparation and job exploration, and to assist with pre-arrival services including housing support.
Why is this fee necessary?
This fee is necessary to ensure a stable funding source for the Berkeley International Office in light of its immigration reporting requirements. The fee will ensure that BIO will be consistently staffed at an optimal level to provide the necessary advising and other support services required to ensure that we meet our compliance responsibilities as well as to support the student experience.
What about all the fees students already pay?
Existing fees go towards supporting a variety of student services departments across the campus who support all students including international students e.g. Student Learning, Center, Academic Advisors, Cal Central, Registrar, etc. Because these fees are spread across the university, BIO is unable to receive the proper level of support needed to sustain the unique services it must provide to international students while also meeting government reporting requirements.
Does such a fee exist at other universities?
There are many universities across the US that have implemented a variety of fees to support these services at varying fee levels.
What if I am no longer in F/J visa status?
If a student changes their status to a different classification (non-F/J) before the first day of classes, the fee may be unapplied. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org to report your change of status (please provide attach evidence of your change of status).