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IFSO Lunch & Learn

IFSO's Lunch & Learn Series covers frequently asked questions sent to our office as well as other topics, and are designed for our international scholars, faculty, postdocs, and their families, as well as our departmental collaborators. This series is included in our Calendar Overview. The drawers below detail our ongoing topics as well as "Quicklinks" for related resources.

IFSO Calendar Overview

H-1B | Changing Status to H1B

Are you interested in changing your current immigration status to H1B? This workshop will provide an overview of the H1B status and how to change to H1B. Topics will include institutional policy, job titles, 212e restrictions, costs, timing and more.

DATE: 11/29/22

TIME: 12 noon - 1 pm

RSVP here (virtual presentation)

IFSO + the Basics: Immigration 101

This workshop is for anyone interested in understanding the basics of the immigration work we do within IFSO, UC San Diego. As it is a subject that can be very complex, we will be presenting with a surface level approach, going over terms and frequently asked questions we encounter. Our aim is to provide explanations on important topics such as visas we work with and common terminology, among others. Please note: there will be no advising during this Lunch & Learn session.

DATE: 9/27/22

TIME: 12 noon - 1 pm

RSVP here (virtual event)

J-1 | Gallagher (Garnett-Powers) on Visitor Scholar Insurance Plans for J-1 Scholars

Representatives from Gallagher (Garnett-Powers and Associates) will be available via zoom to talk about the J-1 Visiting Scholar insurance plans.

Topics to be addressed include:

  • Understanding U.S. health insurance jargon
  • How to use the health insurance plans to keep out-of-pocket costs less
  • How to best use the Basic plan given its minimal coverage
  • How to locate a provider in a specific zip code
  • How to read an "Explanation of Benefits"
  • Difference between Gallagher (Garnett-Powers), the insurance broker, and the actual insurance company
Note: This presentation will be focused on the Visiting Scholar plans and not the postdoctoral insurance plans; some of the material may be helpful, however, to new postdocs unfamiliar with systems of healthcare and insurance in the U.S.  


DATE: 9/13/22

TIME: 12 noon - 1 pm

RSVP here (virtual event)

J-1 | Understanding J1 Waivers and the 12- and 24-Month Bars

If you are currently in a J1 status, we invite you to join us for an informational session on regulatory requirements that may affect you. Topics will include the 12-month bar, 24-month bar, 212e two-year home residency requirement, and more. Find out how these topics may affect you and your dependents. International Scholar and Student Advisors will be on hand to answer questions after the session.

DATE: 10/18/22

TIME: 12 noon - 1 pm

RSVP here (virtual event)

PR | Implications of the Visa Bulletin for your Permanent Residency Plans

The International Faculty & Scholars Office will discuss the effects the visa bulletin has on scholars who want to apply for permanent residency. We will discuss the visa bulletin in the context of employment based permanent residency routes such as Extraordinary Ability (EB1), Outstanding Researcher & Professor (EB1), National Interest Waiver (EB2) and Labor Certification (EB2).  

Topics to be addressed include:
  • How does the visa bulletin affect your ability to apply for permanent residency?
  • What is a priority date?
  • How do you establish your priority date?
  • How do you interpret the visa bulletin?
  • What is the difference between the “Final Action Dates” vs “Dates for filing?” 
Note: This presentation is intended for scholars with basic knowledge of the permanent residency process. We highly encourage you to first attend the Permanent Residency Overview: Process and Pathway workshop. 
DATE: 12/1/22
TIME: 12 noon - 1 pm

TAXES | Understanding Taxes in the U.S.

This workshop will discuss basic U.S. tax concepts and processes to help scholars and students anticipate what their tax liability will be, as well as their annual tax filing obligations and what resources are available to meet these obligations. 

Topics include:
  • understanding what graduated tax rates are
  • understanding the difference between income and payroll (FICA) taxes
  • determining your tax residency status (Nonresident Alien vs Resident Alien for Tax Purposes) and implications for your tax liability
  • identifying potential tax treaty benefits
  • recognizing the different processes for federal vs state tax filing obligations
  • interpreting the different tax forms (W-4, W-2, 1042-S, etc.)
  • learning the timeline for completing your required federal and state tax returns
  • understanding basic resources available to help you in completing your tax returns

Resources on IFSO’s Tax webpage

DATE: 10/11/22

TIME: 12 noon - 1 pm

RSVP here (virtual event)

TAXES | Completing the Federal Tax Form 8843

This workshop is for all F students and J Exchange Visitors who were present inside the U.S. for at least one day during the prior tax year in F or J status, are Nonresident Aliens for federal tax purposes, AND have no U.S. source income. If you meet all three of these conditions, your only U.S. federal tax filing obligation is completing the Form 8843 (dependents must file this form as well). The workshop will review tax filing obligations, tax residency determination, and then proceed step-by-step in filling out the Form 8843 from both an F/J student perspective and a J scholar perspective.

Details on IFSO’s Tax webpage; instructions here

 Annual Meeting, generally takes place in March, TBA

TAXES | Federal Tax Workshop

Professor Steve Gill, San Diego State University, Fowler College of Business faculty member, and Douglas Kelley, Accounting Lecturer at San Diego State University and Coordinator for the San Diego State University VITA program, will present on federal tax filing requirements for Nonresident Aliens for Tax Purposes and using Glacier Tax Prep software in preparing nonresident alien tax returns.

 Annual Meeting, generally takes place in March, TBA

TAXES | State Tax Workshop

  • Representatives from the California Franchise Tax Board will be present
  • Ideally students and scholars should complete their federal tax returns prior to attending this workshop and may want to bring them for reference. This session will NOT be recorded.

Details on IFSO’s Tax webpage

 Annual Meeting, generally takes place in March, TBA

TRAVEL | Travel & Re-entry

This workshop is for faculty and scholars sponsored by UC San Diego who are planning to travel outside the US. Learn about the various travel restrictions enacted through presidential proclamation that could impact your travel and reentry to the U.S., as well as understanding the process for J-1s to request a travel signature, which documents you will need to reenter the US, and steps you should take once you have reentered.

Inquiries? Please email your advisor or

Informative Webpage

Travel signature request form

DATE: 11/15/22

TIME: 12 noon - 1 pm

RSVP here (virtual event)