International & F1 VISA Students

Midlands Technical College is committed to multiculturalism and student awareness of the global community. A growing number of international students are choosing to attend the college.

The following information has been compiled as information for international students:

Questions Frequently Asked by International Students

What courses can I take to improve my English language skills?

Fundamental courses are offered in Reading Comprehension and English writing.  MTC does not offer an Intensive English Language Program.

Where do I go if I have personal problems, such as homesickness?

Contact Counseling Services at (803) 738-7636 or (803) 822-3505.

Who do I see if I have questions about my visa or I-20?

Contact MTC’s international admission coordinator, Ms. Risa Grossman at 803-738-7735 or grossmanr@midlandstech.edu.

What are the employment opportunities for international students at MTC?

See the detailed list of contacts later in this section.

How do I get permission to work off campus?

If you are in F1 status, you cannot work off campus unless awarded Economic Hardship status by the Immigration Service. You can work off campus if your visa status specifies work eligibility. The international admissions coordinator, Ms. Grossman, can discuss work eligibility conditions with interested students. Also, see the section on “International Students Seeking Employment at MTC” for information about on-campus job possibilities.

Must I have health insurance?

It is a good idea to have health insurance either from home or from an insurance company in the US. The college does not provide health coverage for students. However, the college provides accident insurance that covers students who may be injured while on campus or at a college-sponsored event.

Do I qualify for any kind of scholarship?

International students do not qualify for federal or state grants but they may apply for scholarships offered by the Midlands Technical College Foundation.  Information is available online via MTC's Student Financial Services web page at www.midlandstech.edu/sfs.

May I drop a class if I am not doing well in it?

F1 visa students may not drop a class during the fall or spring terms if by doing so they will be less than full-time students (12 credit hours). Maintaining a full-time credit hour course load is required by Citizenship and Immigration Service regulations. This is the most important responsibility that international students must fulfill.

Is there anything I need to do before traveling outside the United States?

Students (F1) should bring their passport and I-20 to Ms. Grossman to verify that both are still valid for re-entering the United States.

What do I need to do when I am ready to transfer to another college?

Students (F1) should apply to the new college, have an official transcript from MTC sent to the new college, and submit to Ms. Grossman the new college's transfer clearance form and the new college's acceptance letter. Ms. Grossman will notify USCIS of the transfer, and this notification will complete the transfer process.

As an international student, do I have to file income tax returns each April?

Yes. Ms. Grossman will send F1 students a letter in January explaining what to do.

When will I be assigned to an academic advisor?

You will be assigned to a faculty advisor during your first semester at MTC. If you do not know who to contact to schedule an advisement appointment, call the Beltline Advisement Center at 738-7810.

Can I register for my courses over the Internet?

Continuing students in some programs are automatically approved for online registration. In other programs, academic advisors determine a student’s eligibility for online registration. Your advisor will let you know if you are eligible for online registration. The MyMTC Student Menu has a link, “Check if I can register online,” that will show whether you have been enabled to register online.

If I have been approved for online registration, when can I register for my courses?

The dates for online registration are the same as for regular on-campus registration.  Those dates are published in the Class Schedule and on the MTC website at www.midlandstech.edu.

How can I learn to use the MyMTC system?

There are links to several tutorials on the Student Menu of the MyMTC system. From the main MTC web page, www.midlandstech.edu, click on the “Enrolled Students” tab. Then click on “MyMTC.” From there, click on MyMTC Tutorials. MTC also provides Online Services Centers on the second floor of the Student Centers on Airport and Beltline campuses. Assistants in the Online Services Centers can provide assistance, if needed.

International Students Seeking Employment at MTC

In general, international students may not be employed by businesses or accept federally funded work-study positions. International students with F1 visas may be employed as part-time temporary employees by college departments. Below is a list of departments and areas at MTC that traditionally hire students as temporary employees in various capacities. Contact information and job descriptions are given also.

Academic Success Center hires academic tutors to assist students in various courses. Positions are often available for math, science, Spanish, French and accounting courses. Tutors are sometimes needed in other courses. Contact: Alfred Pritchard at 822-3071.

Counseling and Career Services hires students as note-takers for MTC students with disabilities in various courses and sections as needed. Contact Counseling and Career Services on Beltline Campus at 738-7636 (BSC 239) or on Airport Campus at 822-3559 (ASC 237).

Online Services students assist other applicants and students with various aspects of using the computer to accomplish various things like: applying, getting a schedule, and completing a FAFSA. Contact Emily Burns, Counseling and Career Services at 738-7636 or burnse@midlandstech.edu.

Campus Bookstore hires students to work both at the Beltline and Airport locations. Students might be hired during the “start of semester” weeks. A few students are hired to work throughout the year. Contact: BC at 738-7783 and AC at 822-3522.

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Library

Whether you have an assignment, research paper or just need the answer to a question, the MTC Library is here to help. During operating hours, the library staff offers reference assistance for your research needs. The library’s online resources, including online reference assistance, are available via the web. In addition to the print collection, the library provides online access to a large collection of e-books, plus an extensive list of general and specialized databases covering numerous subject areas. Visit the library’s website for more information, www.lib.midlandstech.edu.

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Lost and Found

Students who have lost or found any items should check with the Student Life Office on the appropriate campus. A description of items found, as well as those reported missing, is located in the Student Life Office on Airport and Beltline campuses.

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Military Services Office

MTC, in coordination with the local military reserve unit, has established an office of Military Services at Midlands Technical College. This office works with the MTC Veterans’ Affairs Office and other offices of the college to assist military personnel and their families with the transition to college and to link current and past members of the military with supportive community services that are designed to serve active duty military, reservists and veterans and their families.

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MyMTC

MyMTC is the primary access portal to quick, convenient online college services for students, faculty and staff. Accessible at MyMTC.midlandstech.edu, MyMTC offers a variety of services such as registration, payment management, financial aid services, academic information and planning, MTC Alerts, program evaluations, plus much more. MyMTC is available 24/7 from the Midlands Technical College website so members of the MTC community will have virtual, convenient access to services.

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MyMTC Email

All Midlands Technical College students are assigned an email account upon admission to the college. This student email account is the official form of notification regarding important college information such as registration notices, course cancellations, financial aid transactions, academic probation/suspension notices, student code and grievance communications and notices from faculty. Students are responsible for checking their college email on a daily basis and for maintaining the account. It is the responsibility of each student opting to have their email forwarded to an external account to verify this process is set up correctly to ensure all college emails are sent to the external account designated by the student.

The MyMTC Email addresses are hosted by Microsoft Office 365. Students will have the option to use the new email addresses for life. These email addresses offer a 10 GB inbox, password-protected online file storage, shared online documents and calendars, instant messaging, and mobile access through ActiveSynch enabled phones.

Students who do not have a personal computer or Internet access at home may use computers in the Online Services Centers or Academic Success Centers.

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Nondiscrimination Statement

Midlands Technical College does not discriminate in admissions or employment on the basis of race, sex, national origin or ethnic group, color, age, religion, disability, genetic information, military service, or pregnancy. In compliance with Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Sections 503 and 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1992 as well as the ADA Amendments of 2008 (ADAA), and the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008 (GINA), Midlands Technical College offers access and equal opportunity in its admissions policies, academic programs and services, and employment of disabled individuals in that no otherwise qualified person will be denied these provisions on the basis of a disability. Dr. Ronald L. Rhames has been designated to coordinate compliance with the nondiscrimination requirements contained in Section 35.107 of the Department of Justice regulations, Sections 503 and 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and Title VII and Title IX regulations. Information concerning the provisions of the American with Disabilities Act and the rights and privileges thereunder are available from Dr. Rhames in his position as the Senior Vice President for Business Affairs and Compliance Officer for Affirmative Action, Equal Opportunity, Sexual Harassment and Disability Action. He can be reached at Midlands Technical College, P.O. Box 2408, Columbia, SC 29202, (803) 822-3261.

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Online Services Centers

Staff in the college’s Online Services Centers help students to access the online admissions application, course searches, MTC email, MyMTC, and other online services. Online Services Centers are located in the Airport Student Center, room 222; and Beltline Student Center, room 227.

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Organizations

(See Student Life.)

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Orientation Services

Midlands Technical College offers a variety of orientation services for college students. All entering students receive individualized information to familiarize themselves with college services and resources. New first-time college students are required to attend  on-campus New Student Orientation to meet with college officials, faculty, staff, and students; it is offered at a variety of different times and locations to meet the diverse needs of our students.

Prior to attending New Student Orientation all entering students are required to complete the Pre-Advisement Module (PAM) prior to meeting with an advisor. PAM connects students to key details on expectations for success,  the honor code, student services and activities, in addition to their MyMTC Email and MyMTC accounts. If special circumstances exist, students may request to complete an online orientation instead of attending one on campus.

Lastly, to provide extended orientation support to students entering college for the first time, first-time freshmen may enroll in COL105, the Freshman Seminar. This course provides intensive college success strategies designed to help students meet their academic goals - a nurturing environment where all students develop a better understanding of the learning process, and acquire essential academic survival skills. Please note that many academic programs have mandatory program-specific orientation activities for their students. Student learning communities are integrated into select courses in which new students participate as part of the college’s New Student Experience.

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Parking and Traffic Regulations

In order to promote a safe parking environment, students must register any vehicles they park on MTC campuses.  Registration is free and may be done for several vehicles at one time. Students are subject to a $100 fine for failure to register their vehicle.

Students may register vehicles through their MyMTC accounts by visiting the “Student Vehicle Registration” link. The link can be found on the MyMTC Enrolled Students page, “Additional Services” section.  Upon completion of registration, students will print off a form that serves as proof of registration, which they should keep in their vehicle(s).  The registration confirmation must be presented when requested by MTC Campus Police.

Student vehicle registration is not a parking permit. Only MTC faculty and staff may park in permit locations.

All students may park in areas not reserved for permit holders, visitors, people with disabilities, loading zone vehicles, or other specially designated purposes. (See the maps in Appendices V through IX.)

The college is not responsible for theft, vandalism or other damage to vehicles (or their contents) while these are on college property. Students are advised to leave valuable possessions at home.

Penalties and Fines

Vehicle owners will be held responsible for any violations involving the vehicle, even if someone else was driving it. All members of the college - students, faculty and staff - are subject to the same traffic and parking regulations.

Fines may be paid in person at the Cashier’s Office on each campus Monday thru Thursday between 8:00am and 4:30pm or mailed to: Midlands Technical College, P.O. Box 2408, Columbia, SC 29202. The ticket number and student ID number should accompany payment to help ensure payment is properly credited.

Failure to pay fines may result in the loss of classes and prohibit registration and the release of transcripts. The debt will be processed through the college’s collection procedures if payment is not received. Payment may be made at all cashier locations, online or by calling (803) 732-5200.

Fines

Parking Improperly

$  10.00

Parking in No Parking Zone

$  15.00

Parking in Visitor’s Reserved Parking

$  15.00

Parking in Permit Zone

$  15.00

Loading Zone Violation

$  15.00

Parking in a Handicapped Zone

$100.00

Parking at a Fire Hydrant

$100.00

Other $  15.00

Appeals

If a student wishes to appeal a ticket, they should submit the appeal in writing to the Chief of Police within three days after receipt of the ticket. The appeal should include the student’s name, student ID number, the ticket number, a telephone number where the student can be reached, and the reason the student is requesting an appeal.  The appeal can be mailed to Midlands Technical College, P.O. Box 2408, Columbia, SC 29202.

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Pet Policy

Animals are prohibited on campus. Exempt from this prohibition are service dogs for the blind, visually and/or hearing impaired.

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Probation

(See Academic Progress.)

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Publications

The English Department publishes an annual student literary magazine, Stylus, which is online at www.midlandstech.edu/stylus/. The Student Life Office publications include an online student newspaper, The Pony Express, the online Student Handbook, and MTC Club Manual. All of the aforementioned student publications are found at www.midlandstech.edu/studentlife.

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Read Right®

Read Right® is a nationally recognized program designed to help students improve their reading skills, especially English-language learners and those with learning disabilities. The college offers Read Right® tutoring to all students through the Academic Success Centers. Each student is assessed first and then tutored individually and in small groups by trained staff members. Progress differs from student to student, but those who attend regularly generally experience one grade-level of improvement in reading for every 11 hours they spend in tutoring. For more information about MTC’s Read Right® program, visit www.midlandstech.edu/dvs/Read%20Right.html.

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Readmission to the College

(See Admissions.)

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Refund of Student Course Fees/Tuition

All students must officially withdraw from classes in order to receive full or partial refunds. To officially withdraw, a student must complete a Drop/Add/Withdrawal form and turn it in to the Student Records Office located on the Airport or Beltline campus.  The Drop/Add/Withdrawal forms may be obtained at the Student Information Centers and the Student Records Office on each campus or online at the Student Records website.

Web-enabled students may officially drop courses via MyMTC through the end of Schedule Change. Courses dropped after the official Schedule Change period are considered grades of withdrawal (W) and must be processed personally.

Payment will be required if a student does not attend class(es) (no show) and does not officially drop or withdraw. MTC has allocated instructional resources based on student enrollment on record. Students will be billed for these classes and the debt will be processed through the college’s collection procedures if payment is not received. Midlands Technical College employs third party agencies to collect delinquent student accounts. By registering for classes, students acknowledge responsibility to pay any expenses incurred by the college to collect on the account, should it become delinquent.

Refunds will take approximately three to four weeks to process. The amount of the refund will be based on the date the completed form is received by the Student Records Office, according to the Institutional Refund Schedule below. All fees are nonrefundable. Fees are defined as Application Fees (charged for each application submitted), Enrollment Fees (charged to all first-time students), Student Fees (charged each semester to all students), Late Registration Fees (charged to students who register after the end of fee payment), and any course or program related fees.

Withdrawal or Net Reduction of Credit Hours

Percent of Refund

1st - 5th instructional day of the term

100%

6th - 10th instructional day of the term

50%

11th - 15th instructional day of the term

25%

After 15th instructional day of the term

0%

Refunds for terms that vary in length from the Fall and Spring semester terms will be in proportion to the semester-term refund schedule.

Federal Financial Aid Recipients

Students who receive federal financial aid will earn the entire award after 60 percent of the term has been completed.

In the case of complete withdrawal, any student who completely withdraws prior to 60 percent of the term will owe a portion of tuition and fees to the college, based on the length of time the student was enrolled. Immediate repayment is required.

A student may also owe the federal government a portion of the federal funds disbursed. Immediate repayment may be required.

After enrollment is verified; financial aid awards are adjusted; and tuition, fees and books/supplies charged at the MTC Bookstore are debited from student accounts; any remaining aid will be transmitted to Higher One to be disburses to them.  The student must designate whether these funds will be deposited in their bank accounts or disburses to their Higher One card. This designation can be done online. A Higher One card may be used as a debit card on or off campus, and Higher One ATMs have been placed in the Student Financial Services/Cashier Lobby on the Beltline Campus and in the first floor Academic Center lobby on the Airport Campus, so students may withdraw cash, if needed.

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