Policy on Visiting Scholars
Visiting Scholars are appointed by the Office of the Provost on the recommendation of the Dean of Faculty/Dean and where appropriate the Department/Area Chair for periods of up to one year. Visiting Scholars are provided with Fordham ID cards, access to Fordham internet resources including e-mail, and access to the Fordham University Libraries. Letters of invitation or appointment for long term visits should never be issued by individual faculty members, programs, or departments as such visits require approval by the appropriate dean and the Office of the Provost.
A faculty member who wishes to host a visiting scholar should provide the dates of appointment (up to one year), a CV of the visiting scholar, contact information for the scholar, and a brief description of the benefits of the appointment to their Department/Area Chair or Dean for review. Before agreeing to host an International Scholar please review the requirements below.
Upon approval, the Office of the Provost will issue an official Letter of Appointment to the Visiting Scholar. When the scholar arrives on campus, the Department/School should complete and submit an Electronic Access Form for the scholar with a copy of the official Letter of Appointment. Once the scholar has been entered into Banner by Human Resources s/he will be able to get an id card and electronic access.
International Visiting Scholars
For International Scholars, it is important to determine if the scholar is a student i.e. enrolled in a degree program overseas. If that is the case, the appropriate dean would issue the official Letter of Appointment since the purpose of the visit is considered to be educational, even if the student is not taking any classes at Fordham. For all others, the Office of the Provost will issue the letter.
Once the Official Letter of Appointment is issued, the Visiting Scholar can use the letter to apply for funding for their visit. Some funding programs, such as the Fulbright Program, will handle all of the visa details. Other Visiting Scholars may want Fordham University to sponsor them for a J-1 visa. The faculty member who is serving as host should contact the Office of International Services as early in the process as possible with all of the details if Fordham is sponsoring the scholar. OIS will e-mail a form to gather the required information. When that is complete, OIS will issue a DS-2019 to the Visiting Scholar. The Visiting Scholar will take the DS-2019 to the US Consulate to apply for the visa. This whole process takes about one month so it is important to get OIS involved early in the process.
Hosting an International Scholar
Fordham sponsors all of our foreign national students for F-1 visas and all of our Visiting Research Scholars for J-1 visas using a system called SEVIS that ties in to Homeland Security directly. When the government set up the SEVIS computer system in response to 9/11 they tasked the universities with keeping track of all of their visa holders. As you can imagine, access to this system is vital to the University. As host of a foreign national Visiting Scholar, you are critical to our obligation to keep track of our visa holders. In order to do that, you should have some sort of direct or indirect contact roughly every two weeks with your visiting scholar during the semester. This could be as simple as seeing the scholar at a Departmental Seminar. You should also have a general awareness of any travel plans your visitor may have. If for example your scholar is delayed in arriving please notify Sal Longarino in the Office of International Services so he can make the appropriate adjustments in the SEVIS system. If your scholar plans to go out of the country at some point or plans to be away from campus for more than two weeks have them check in with the Office of International Services about their travel plans. Some areas formally request that visitors attend a weekly area seminar as one way to maintain contact and bring the visitor into the life of the area and the school. Summer presents more problems since you may not be around that much. Two meetings during the summer plus an e-mail every couple of weeks asking about plans, progress, and problems would probably suffice if your visitor will be here through the summer.