Below you will find information about how to contact ISSS. Our website contains information that will answer most immigration-related questions. At the bottom of the page are links to the most common ISSS inquiries. If you aren’t able to locate the information you need on our website, the fastest way to connect with an ISSS advisor is through our Live Chat service. If your question is too complicated for Live Chat, you can book an advising appointment to speak with one of our advisors by videochat or phone. Sending an email to ISSS is the slowest and least efficient way to get an answer to your question. Please choose another option before sending an email to ISSS.
ISSS advisors are available to meet with you to discuss questions you might have.
You must have an appointment in order to speak with an ISSS advisor during Advising Hours.
Please adhere to the following guidelines:
- If you have already sent an email to ISSS with your inquiry, please do not make a separate appointment to follow up. You’ll receive a response in three to five business days
- Remember to include your Campus ID and any relevant information when making your appointment
UMBC is closed Monday, July 4th. There will be no Live Chat hours on July 4th.
ISSS takes 3-5 business days to process applications or respond to email inquiries.
Live Chat (all times Eastern US Time)
Monday: 2:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Tuesday/Wednesday/Friday: 10:00 AM -12:00 PM
When should I use Live Chat?
To ask quick questions related to your F-1 status and immigration, such as: F-1 credit requirements, CPT requirements, work authorization, travel
To ask quick questions about accessing services via the ISSS Portal, such as requesting an I-20, I-20 reprints, travel signatures, submitting a CPT application, etc.
Live Chat is NOT for following up on a submitted application or email – remember ISSS takes 3-5 business days to process applications or respond to email inquiries
Questions or situations that are more complex require an advising appointment. You can make one here: ISSS Advising Hours
ISSS Advising Appointments
Monday: 10:00 AM- 12:00 PM
Wednesday/Thursday: 1:00 PM – 3:00 PM
When should I book an appointment?
If you have a question or issue that is too complicated for Live Chat.
If you have documents that need to be physically reviewed — other than I-20 travel signatures (see “Document Drop Off” below).
Advising appointments are NOT for following up on a submitted application or email – remember ISSS takes 3-5 business days to process applications or respond to email inquiries.
Booking an advising appointment will not speed up our reply to you; in fact it will delay our ability to respond to your email or process your application.
Document Drop Off & Pickup
If you need to drop off an I-20 for a travel signature or pick up a document from ISSS, you can visit the front desk of the Center for Global Engagement (CGE), located on the second floor of the University Center (above Starbucks and Chick-fil-A).
CGE is open from 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM, Monday through Friday.
Please adhere to the following guidelines:
- Only come to pick up a document when you have been notified it is available
- Document requests cannot be made by visiting the front desk – please use the appropriate method (ISSS Portal or email) to make your request
- You must bring your UMBC Campus ID card
- You cannot meet with an ISSS advisor when you pick up a document
Getting in Touch By Email
If you have a question or issue that you cannot resolve using any of the methods above, please email ISSS. We aim to respond to inquiries within 3-5 business days. ISSS advisors respond to emails during business hours: Monday through Friday, 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM.
Please do not send multiple emails or contact individual CGE staff members. This will only delay our ability to respond promptly to your message.
ISSS is your best source of information regarding immigration, visas, and work permission. For other inquiries, please contact the specific office or department that manages those areas:
Billing, payments, wire transfers, tuition and fees, payment plan
Health insurance, immunizations, health form, counseling
Finding an off-campus apartment, roommates, commuter resources
On-campus employment, internships, CPT PRAC enrollment, & job search support
Requesting a transcript, adding/dropping courses, enrollment verification, graduation for undergraduate students
Academic advising for undergraduate (BA, BS) students, resources for academic success
Each academic department provides academic advising for their master’s and Ph.D. students
The progressions team in the Graduate School assists master’s and Ph.D. students with graduation
Before you schedule an appointment or contact us, the answers to most F-1 student questions can be found here: