Visits to WSU by foreign nationals

For work associated with WSU

To get started, contact the Office of International Programs, Department of International Student and Scholar Services

If you plan to bring a foreign national to WSU

The Department of International Student and Scholar Services works with academic departments and faculty to determine the immigration category that foreign nationals should use to enter the U.S., based on the purpose of their visit to WSU. Its advisors and a faculty immigration specialist answer questions about complex immigration regulations that pertain to WSU international students, scholars, and faculty.

WSU departments must work closely with International Student and Scholar Services

International Student and Scholar Services has primary responsibility for ensuring that the University is in compliance with all federal reporting requirements for foreign nationals at WSU. Eligibility for federal grant funds is dependent upon WSU being in compliance with all federal reporting requirements, including SEVIS (Student and Exchange Visitor Information System).

Intellectual Property (IP) and Proprietary Information Agreement for Visiting Scholars

WSU is governed in the handling of IP by its official policies as set forth in the WSU Faculty Manual and the Executive Policy on Intellectual Property (EP38). Those covered by these policies include all persons employed by the University, participating in University research, or who contribute to the creation of IP (such as patent, copyright, or trademark) under contractual relationship with the University, and/or dispute the inventorship or ownership of IP arising from University research, resources, or employment.

These policies are applicable to visitors using WSU resources, even if the visitors are not considered “official” visitors of the University and/or if the visitors do not have WSU IDs. Visitors using WSU resources for research purposes are required to complete the Intellectual Property and Proprietary Information Agreement for Visiting Personnel Using WSU Facilities and return it to the WSU Office of Commercialization. It is the responsibility of the hosting academic unit to ensure that visitors are aware of WSU’s policies and complete the form before the beginning of their visit. Please contact the WSU Office of Commercialization  for additional information regarding the form or IP generated by visitors to WSU.


Visit guidance

The University welcomes international visitors traveling to WSU campuses. WSU fully supports and encourages academic units, programs, faculty, and students to enhance their international activities through programs, events, and academic exchanges with international scholars.

Prior to initiating an international visit, it is important to ensure that appropriate government regulations and University policies and procedures are followed (please see Guidelines for Adjunct Faculty, Adjoint Faculty, Affiliate Faculty, visiting Faculty, and Visiting Scholars), and that export control regulations are met. This information is intended to provide a brief summary detailing guidance for international visitors. For additional information, please see International on Campus, or contact the WSU Office of International Programs (WSU IP).

Prior to visit

  • Foreign nationals coming to the U.S. to study, visit, or work need to apply for a visa. For a full list of visa categories, please click here.
  • Work with WSU IP to perform restricted party screening. Before issuing an invitation and sponsoring a visa, please contact to conduct restricted party screening.
    • Formal visits: Restricted party screening is required for any visit where a visa is sponsored by WSU.
    • Informal visits: Visits from international colleagues may sometimes occur informally if the visitor’s visa is not sponsored from WSU. Informal visits are not subject to the same guidelines as a formal visit. However, WSU strongly advises that restricted party screening is conducted regardless of the nature of the visit.
  • Issue a formal invitation letter. The Dean or Department Head in the host’s department should review and sign the letter. The letter should contain:
    • The full name of the proposed visitor, the visitor’s home institution, and the WSU host and department names.
    • A brief description about the visitor’s anticipated work assignment or purpose of visit.
    • A statement that the visit is contingent on the receipt of a valid visa issued by the U.S. government.
    • Dates of anticipated arrival and departure. Do not extend the invitation beyond the time frame that the visitor will be in your direct supervision or responsibility.
  • Determine if any payment will be made to the visitor. For example, if an international scholar will receive a payment for their visit, such as for a presentation or workshop, this may be subject to specific requirements.
    • Please be aware of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, which involves payments to foreign government officials.
    • Please contact WSU IP if you have any questions about payments or the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.
  • Assist your visitor by providing necessary arrival information. Areas to consider include but are not limited to transportation, lodging, money and banking, health information and services, and relevant U.S. rules and laws.


During campus visit

  • Before conducting a lab tour, determine if the visitors will have access to any information or materials subject to export controls. If work done by the lab is subject to export controls, determine if technology control plans need to be revised prior to the visitor touring the lab.
  • Follow best practices during lab tours. Best practices include:
    • Perform restricted party screening prior to the tour.
    • Maintain a lab visitor log.
    • Conceal confidential or proprietary information.
    • Prohibit photography/video.
    • Prohibit anyone from inserting any forms of media (including USB drives) into WSU-owned computers. It is also advised that you do not allow unknown media to be inserted on your personal computer.
    • Escort visitors throughout entire tour. Do not leave visitors unattended.


Issues to consider

Visa requirements

Review visa guidelines for coming to WSU.

  • Do the individuals you plan to bring to the U.S. have visas?
  • Have they cleared all U.S. foreign nationals regulations?

Export control regulations

Read the U.S. Department of Agriculture import export control regulations.

  • Are they bringing into the U.S. items for the project, such as computers, software, plants, animals, etc.?
  • Is their country aware that these items are being taken outside their country?

Travel costs

Contact the Office of Research Support and Operations or your department research administrator for information.

  • Do you have an agreement in place and an account set up so that costs associated with travel will be covered?
  • Are the costs within the allowed time frame of the project?
  • Are they allowable on the project?

WSU employment policies

Read the Business Policies and Procedures Manual 60:05: Employing Non-U.S. Citizens

Pre-arrival checklist

For assistance with the requirements and needs of International Students planning to come to WSU, please contact International Student and Scholar Services for pre-arrival checklists and other helpful information.


Contact International Student and Scholar Services

206 Bryan Hall