International Visitors

General Information

Virginia Tech is required by federal regulations to establish procedures to monitor assignments to its facilities of foreign nationals to ensure that the disclosure of, and access to, export-controlled articles and related information are limited to those that are approved by an export authorization. Also, in accordance with part 6 of the I-129 Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker, Virginia Tech must certify whether or not an H-1B/H-1B1/L-1/O-1A applicant requires an export license. Finally, International Affairs and the Office of Export and Secure Research Compliance (OESRC) have established interim procedures that require OESRC review of all foreign nationals who are not degree-seeking students enrolled at Virginia Tech.

What do I need to do?

Submit a Non-Immigrant Export Compliance Questionnaire along with a copy of the foreign national’s CV/Resume. There are two options for submission to OESRC:

  1. Log into our Webform (must be Virginia Tech hosting faculty) or;
  2. Download the Form and follow the instructions

OESRC will review the documentation and determine if an export authorization is required for the visitor. Upon completion of the review, OESRC will provide export guidance related to the visitor to the host faculty. The host faculty is required to provide a copy of the OESRC review summary documentation to International Support Services in order to process a visa or invitation letter.

Note: If you are unsure of the visa classification needed for your visitor or how to request immigration processing, please go to the International Support Services website and review the available visa classifications and request procedures.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why does OESRC screen international visitors?

Virginia Tech is required by federal regulations to establish procedures to monitor assignments to its facilities of foreign nationals to ensure that the disclosure of, and access to, export-controlled articles and related information are limited to those that are approved by an export authorization. Additionally, Virginia Tech is a registered exporter with the Department of State and Virginia Tech has an obligation to comply with U.S. export and sanctions regulations (22 CFR 120-130, 15 CFR 300-799, 31 CFR 500-599). Finally, International Affairs and OESRC have established procedures that require OESRC review of all foreign nationals who are not degree seeking students enrolled at Virginia Tech.

For some visa petitions, Virginia Tech is required to certify to the federal government that it has reviewed applicable export regulations and determined whether or not an export license will be required for the foreign national’s visit. Violations of these regulations are punishable by civil and/or criminal fines/punishments. To meet these compliance requirements, OESRC screens foreign visitors to Virginia Tech for export and sanctions regulation compliance and affiliation with restricted parties or embargoed organizations.

The Office of Foreign Assets Control administers and enforces economic sanctions program that can be either comprehensive or selective, using the blocking of assets and trade restrictions to accomplish foreign policy and national security goals.  A summary description of each particular embargo or sanctions program may be found in the Sanctions Programs and Country Information page.  Prohibited transactions are trade or financial transactions and other dealings in which U.S. persons may not engage unless authorized by OFAC or expressly exempted by statute. U.S. persons must comply with OFAC regulations, including all U.S. citizens and permanent resident aliens regardless of where they are located, all persons and entities within the United States, all U.S. incorporated entities and their foreign branches.  International visitors to Virginia Tech should be aware of OFAC sanctions and ensure that they do not engage in any prohibited transactions unless authorized by OFAC or expressly exempted by statute. 

Why do I need to send the Resume/Curriculum Vitae?

The resume/curriculum vitae is necessary to verify the background of the international visitor and confirm there is no affiliation with restricted parties or embargoed organizations.

How do I issue an invitation letter?

Invitation letters for B-1/VWB visitors are the responsibility of the Virginia Tech host department following the completion of the export compliance review by the Office of Export and Secure Research Compliance (OESRC).  You can read more about inviting international visitors here.   Letters must be issued according to the wording on the invitation letter template.  It is the responsibility of the host department to communicate with the international visitor regarding invitation letter needs and then issue the letter following the OESRC review.   If host departments have any questions related to the invitation letter or whether the B-1 or J-1 is more appropriate or questions relating to the J-1 Program, departments should contact Belinda Pauley, bpauley@vt.edu; 540-231-6459.

What impact can this export review have on the Terms of Faculty Offer (TOFO)?

The export review should be completed prior to issuing the TOFO. The results of the export review may be that an export license or other government authorization is required (and may not be granted). This review should be completed in advance of issuing the TOFO so that the TOFO can be conditioned with employment terms contingent on obtaining appropriate export authorizations.

Who is affected?

Virginia Tech international visitors requiring an export review could include tenured faculty, research faculty, technicians, post-doctoral candidates, students, student interns, business visitors, or other faculty and staff categories.

OESRC will be happy to assist you in completing this review process. You can contact us or email us at oesrc@vt.edu. If an export authorization is required from the United States government for your international visitor, OESRC can prepare license requests and submit them on behalf of the university. Bear in mind though, filing for export licenses takes time (45-90 days after license application) for approval from the government after filing. Failure to obtain the appropriate license or other government approval, or failure to file correct export information on the visa petition may result in civil and criminal penalties. OESRC can help you be certain your export review and license application is in compliance with applicable export and sanction laws.

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