Weekly News Roundup: October 19, 2023

By Shorelight Team
Published on October 19, 2023

Each week the Shorelight team rounds up trusted headlines on the latest in international education and all things impacting students and universities.

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Stateside H-1B Visa Renewal Pilot Rule Under White House Review

While this isn’t news about F-1 visas, it does have implications for students. As we all know, competition for visa slots can be fierce in countries like India and Nigeria. This pilot project of stateside renewal for H-1B visas has the potential to open up thousands of visa slots every year. If H-1B visa holders can renew their visas in the US, they will no longer need to schedule time at a consulate for a stamp in their passports when traveling home! Our team is closely monitoring this pilot and will continue to update you as it progresses.

  • Immigration lawyers and employer groups have pushed for restoring the option because of extreme wait times facing visa holders, especially at Indian consular offices. Many workers who left the US to renew their visas found themselves stuck abroad for months as the State Department tried to clear massive appointment backlogs in the wake of the pandemic, creating disruptions for families and employers.

Read the full story on Bloomberg Law >

US Halts Visa Services in Israel, Focuses on Assisting US Citizens

Visa services are not available in Israel at this time. The situation continues to evolve and travel rules and procedures may change with little or no notice. US citizens in Israel are encouraged to monitor State Department websites for updates.

  • Visa services are unavailable at this time at the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem or the Embassy Branch Office in Tel Aviv. Non-U.S. citizens in need of emergency visa services should request an expedited appointment at a U.S. embassy or consulate other than Jerusalem or Tel Aviv.

  • U.S. citizens in Israel, the West Bank or Gaza who would like assistance should fill out this crisis intake form, which allows the U.S. State Department to respond to requests from evacuees in leaving or obtaining other routine or emergency passport or citizen services or information.

  • Commercial flight availability remains limited out of Ben Gurion Airport, but the U.S. government is facilitating charter flights and other modes of transportation for U.S. citizens. The State Department said these flights will continue until at least Oct. 19.

  • The Israeli government has extended the validity of work visas until Nov. 9, 2023, for all foreign nationals in the country whose Israeli visas will expire within the next month.

  • Up-to-date information is available on the Embassy’s News & Events and Travel Alerts pages.

Learn more on the National Law Review >

Australia Seeks Reputation Boost for International Higher Education

During the pandemic, Australia’s policy did not allow any travel into the country. As a result, international students were stranded and unable to return to their studies, and the country was regarded as a less-desirable choice as a higher education destination.

But in a recent survey, it showed that “for the first time in two years Australia has joined Canada as a first-choice study destination, with a 2% increase since the previous Emerging Futures survey conducted in March 2023, whilst Canada has lost 2% since the previous survey.”  When countries have a strategy to address international education, they can work with government agencies to address issues and improvements in order to recover and return to growth.

  • The conference addressed the theme of “International education: visionary and transformative”. Its aim was to explore how the international education sector can continue to transform people, places and ideas to create a more inclusive and connected world.

Read more on University World News >