DHS- Student & Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) External Training Application (SETA)

Training nationwide speeds up the monitoring of international students and exchange visitors

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) enforces federal laws governing border control, customs, trade and immigration to promote homeland security and public safety. ICE was created in 2003 through a merger of the investigative and interior enforcement elements of the former U.S. Customs Service and the Immigration and Naturalization Service.  The National Security Investigations Division within ICE is responsible for the acceptance and monitoring of all international students and exchange visitors.

The Challenge

In order for any international student, exchange visitor, or their dependents to enter the United States, the sponsoring university or program must submit an electronic application to the Department of Homeland Security as well as the Department of State providing various details about each individual for review and approval. Applications are entered into the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS). Applications that are not entered with the correct or required information cause significant delays in allowing the individual to participate in their respective program and a large backlog of applications due to errors. The case workers whose job it is to perform the investigations spend too much time dealing with facilitating the correction of application errors instead of adjudicating cases. Providing the schools with better up-front training, on-demand training, and other troubleshooting tools can greatly improve the quality of the information entered, resulting in focus on important case investigations and faster processing.

The Solution

Geocent is developing a cloud based Training Application (SETA) to provide users content rich and highly interactive training to minimize application errors to allow case workers to focus on the adjudication process.  In addition to the goal of up-front training, SETA also provides on-demand training and scenario based training to allow the applying organization to troubleshoot and correct their application.  It also provides training to schools on how to become officially certified to host international students and exchange visitors.  With approximately 8,700 certified schools, the focus on doing it right the first time will greatly reduce errors and result in more efficiency and less frustration for all parties involved.

Because open-source software is being used for this project, we are reducing operations and maintenance costs to the government.

The Results

SETA will provide four major learning modules with 22 separate areas of study. The system must be capable of being accessed by a minimum of 45,000 users.

The Outcome

In addition to interactive training on numerous aspects of compliance for schools that accept international students and exchange visitors, the system will track each user’s progress through the course, and levels of proficiency through occasional quizzes.  Proven behavior science and cognitive learning principles are being applied in all content development for SETA to deliver relevant, effective user interfaces, strong user interaction, and purposeful humor to maximize the learning experience.