P 112339Z SEP 02



E.O. 12958: N/A

REF: STATE 174234

1. Reftel announced the launch of the Interim Student and Exchange Authentication System (ISEAS), and provided consular officers with basic instructions and advised the field of back-up procedures to ensure that consular officers receive timely electronic verification of enrollment from the sponsoring educational institutions during the first 30 days of ISEAS implementation. This cable repeats and amplifies back-up instructions and provide consular officers with "how-to" ISEAS procedures.

Back-up Procedures

2. Per para 14 of reftel, while some institutions and program sponsors may quickly satisfy the requirement for electronic authentication of F, J or M visa status using ISEAS, Department expects that the majority will be unable to so quickly add the required data into the system. Therefore, for up to 30 days after ISEAS' September 11, 2002, launch, posts are authorized to
accept e-mail notification of F, M or J status in the cases of students/exchange visitors who apply for visas before their sponsoring institutions/organizations have had an opportunity to enter the required data into ISEAS. Posts are advised that, in most cases, if data regarding a particular F, M or J visa applicant is not in ISEAS, the applicant should be advised to contact his or her sponsoring institution or program and advise it of the need to provide electronic confirmation. In most cases an ISEAS entry remains the best option; however, should this option prove unworkable during this 30-day period, posts may accept direct e-mail confirmation of status. Posts are reminded of the need to provide such applicants with an e-mail address that will be monitored on a regular basis for status authentications.

3. At their discretion, posts may send e-mail inquiries directly to the sponsoring institutions and request e-mail confirmation of enrollment. Posts in many cases may be able to obtain e-mail addresses using internet search engines or from the visa applicant directly. CA and ECA will work on obtaining lists of institutional web pages, and will be available to assist consular officers in locating e-mail addresses. If posts cannot make the electronic verification directly, the Visa Office working with ECA will seek the electronic verification from the sponsoring institution upon request from post.

4. Note: Academic institutions and exchange program sponsors have been advised by the Department to limit e-mail confirmations solely to those cases in which a visa applicant has contacted them regarding the need to provide a specific post with electronic notification.
End note.

5. In response to the most frequently asked questions from posts in ISEAS' first day of operation: 1) Electronic notification is/is required of F-2, J-2 and M-2 visa applicants. 2) Ensure that officers are logging into the ISEAS verification screen on the Consular Affairs Intranet Home Page (see para 6 below), and not the internet site intended for academic institutions and
exchange program sponsors. 3) Regarding DS-2019 forms filled out by your USIA/PAO colleagues at post - during the first 30 days of ISEAS, conoffs may accept internal e-mail or verbal confirmation of visa eligibility. However, as of October 11, 2002, all program sponsors, including U.S. government sponsors, must enter electronic authentication of status utilizing ISEAS.  The Enhanced Border Security and Visa Entry Reform Act of 2002 does not provide for alternate notification from USG program sponsors. 4) Posts should retain a record of electronic authentication of F, J or M status as part of the NIV file.

ISEAS How-to

6. The "Interim Student and Exchange Authentication System (ISEAS) "Post Verification" site is now up on the Consular Affairs Intranet Home Page, under "New & Noteworthy Items" as well as "Consular Favorites." Clicking on the title will bring up the ISEAS login screen with two simple boxes. To log into the application, please take the following steps: 1) select your post name from the drop down list, 2) enter your (OpenNet) login name in the Login Name field. (Enter the login name that you use daily to log onto the Department of State OpenNet, normally last name, first initial, middle initial), 3) click on the login button.

7. A successful log in will bring up the Student/Exchange Visitor Query page with your post name and login name displayed at the top of the screen. From this page users can:

- Query student/exchange visitor data to find the records of students and exchange visitors who have had electronic acceptance data submitted to ISEAS by approved schools or program sponsors.

- Mark student and exchange visitor records as verified to document that a particular record in ISEAS has been used to verify that the student/exchange visitor has been accepted by an approved school or program sponsor.

- Query dependent data to find dependents of students/exchange visitors who have had electronic acceptance data submitted to ISEAS by approved schools or program sponsors.

- Mark dependent records as verified to document that a particular record in ISEAS has been used to verify the dependent of a student/exchange visitor.

8. Both of these screens contain links and help buttons that provide further clarification of any of the particular functions. For example, clicking on the
"Mark Student/Exchange Visitor Records" link returns the following clarification:

Begin cite:

To mark query student/exchange visitor records, take the following steps:

- Follow steps 1-3 of Query student/exchange visitor data to find the record which you wish to mark as verified.

- Review the data to make sure that the record matches the paper form submitted by the student/exchange visitor.

- Click on the radio button for that record (this is the button that is displayed on the far left of the query results screen.)

- Please Note: Only one record can be selected at a time. If you select another record, your first record will be deselected.

- Click on the Verify Record button at the top or bottom of the query results screen.

- Special Note Regarding Marking Records as Verified: Once you click on the "Verify Record" button, the record that you marked as verified cannot be unverified. (If you click on "Verify Record" for the wrong record, please contact the ISEAS Help Desk with a request to unmark the record and provide your name, your ISEAS Login Name, and the Confirmation Number, Last Name and First Name of the record that you inadvertently marked as verified.)

- The record that you marked as verified displays with the check box grayed out and checked. In addition, the Date Verified field is populated with the date/time the record was verified and the Post and Post User fields are populated with your Post Name and your Login Name.

- If you have additional records you wish to verify, enter new query criteria in the query screen. Otherwise, click on the Logout link at the top of the
screen to logout of ISEAS.

End cite.

9. Users will note that it is possible to enter the ISEAS post verification application entering any combination of post name and OpenNet login name. Users are directed to ensure that they enter the proper post name/login name for purposes of accountability and data reliability.

10. CA/VO is advised that ISEAS system administrators will sometimes enter test student records to verify that ISEAS is operating properly. These test records can be identified by the last name, which will be displayed as
"Validation Test-OK." These test records do not affect ISEAS operation.

11. As ISEAS is an interim system with the limited support and capacity implied by the term, duplicate records may be entered into the system. If an applicant has multiple records due to data updates, the post user should verify against the record with the most recent Date Entered field. (The Date Entered is displayed in the student record.)

12. Minimize considered.