University of Iowa

Contact International Student and Scholar Services

Walk-in Advising Hours

International students and scholars may see an advisor on a no-appointment, first-come first-served basis.  You will meet with the advisor scheduled for walk-in advising rather than a specific advisor.  Sign up for a walk-in slot is done in the ISSS reception area beginning at 9:00 a.m. or at 1:00 p.m. for the following sessions:  see the main ISSS page for specific walk-in hours and closures.

General Hours

The reception desk where you may pick up documents after being notified by ISSS that they are ready is open Monday through Friday:  8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.  Please bring a photo ID when picking up a document.


1111 University Capitol Centre
The University of Iowa
Iowa City, Iowa 52242-5500

Phone: 319-335-0335
Fax: 319-335-0280


Lee Seedorff

Lee Seedorff, Senior Associate Director |

Reporting to the Assistant Provost for International Programs, Lee directs the operations of  ISSS.  She sets advising policies and procedures, interprets and applies federal regulations and other immigration guidelines, oversees the ISSS budget, coordinates incoming exchange and sponsored student programs, and works closely with University of Iowa administration and departments regarding internationalization issues.  Lee has considerable experience providing intercultural training and programming for students, staff, faculty, and the community, including use of the Intercultural Development Inventory.  A member of ISSS since 1999, she served as Regulatory Ombudsperson for Region IV of NAFSA: Association of International Educators, liaising with schools in the region and the Department of Homeland Security/Department of State.  She also provides professional training for NAFSA on student regulations and intercultural skill development, and recently served as the Region IV International Education Leadership Rep.  As a result of her long-term expertise in F and J regulations, she has provided expert witness opinions in legal cases and published an article on international student employment co-authored with Amanda McFadden from the Pomerantz Career Center in New Directions for Student Services in 2017.  Lee has presented at numerous conferences, including NAFSA, the Association of International Education Administrators (AIEA), and Diversity Abroad.  Lee spent two years on the UI Family Issues Charter Committee, serving one of those years as chair.  Lee has a B.A. with double majors in Anthropology and South Asian Religions, a minor in Sanskrit Language and Literature, and a Master of Social Work, all from the University of Iowa.  She has studied in India and St. Lucia, and spent time in Mexico, Canada, Thailand, and Singapore.  She has studied the Spanish, Hindi, Urdu, and Sanskrit languages, and made less successful attempts to learn Chinese (Mandarin) and German.


Michael Bortscheller

Michael Bortscheller, Assistant Director |

Michael oversees the iHawk database program, developing the online Pre-Arrival Checklist for incoming students and E-Form applications, and monitoring daily immigration record alerts.  He serves as Responsible Officer for J-1 programs, specializing in scholar regulations and processes.  He works closely with ITS, the Registrar, Admissions, and other offices to ensure student and scholar data flows smoothly and accurately, and is responsible for training and overseeing staff use of iHawk.  He is responsible for international student enrollment data and statistical reports including Open Doors, and assessment of the international student fee and undergraduate orientation fee.  Michael has Bachelor’s degrees in Linguistics and Spanish and a Master’s in Linguistics with an emphasis on Teaching English as a Second Language, has studied Spanish in Spain, and has spent time in Canada, England, France, Greece, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, the Netherlands, Singapore, Spain, and Nebraska.


Brandon Paulson

Brandon Paulson, Senior Advisor |

Besides advising duties, Brandon's area of specialization includes intercultural training, where he oversees the Building Our Global Community certificate series, the Bridging Domestic and Global Diversity program, and special requests for individualized workshops.  Brandon serves as orientation coordinator, arranging content and schedules for orienation programs.  He is also instructor for the Global@Iowa course where international and domestic students learn and increase intercultural skills together.  Brandon holds a B.S. in Business Administration and Economics from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls, and a Master's in Education with an emphasis on Student Affairs Administration from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse.  He has studied in the United Kingdom, has studied Spanish, and has spent time in Costa Rica, Canada, Ireland, Spain, England and Scotland.


Rudia Kihura

Rudia Kihura, Senior Advisor |

Rudia provides standard student and scholar advising plus specializes in J-1 scholars who come to do research or teach at the University of Iowa. She does the immigration check-in for newly arrived scholars and orients them to the UI and Iowa City community. She also coordinates cross-cultural events for the scholars, and monitors compliance with insurance requirements. She oversees the Life in Iowa program, which provides ongoing orientation and cultural learning activities.  Rudia sends out the bi-monthly ‘ISSS Update” listserv to students, and a second listserv for scholars. She assists students who receive notices about SEVIS fee issues from the Department of Homeland Security.  Rudia is from Kenya and worked as a school teacher and head of a school counseling program there. She has a B.S. in Education, Master’s degrees in Psychology and Special Education, and is currently a student in the Ph.D. program in Special Education.  Rudia was elected to serve a three-year term on the UI Staff Council starting in summer 2015.


Kevin Roiseland
Andrea Siebenmann

Kevin Roiseland, Senior Advisor |

In addition to standard student and scholar advising duties, Kevin coordinates the non-resident tax program each spring, overseeing the workshops providing tax assistance and the online Windstar tax program.  He also oversees some SEVIS reporting duties including OPT employment reports and I-20s for students returning after an absence.  He serves as the ISSS liaison to the organizations Friends of International Students, the International Women's Club, and the Iowa City Area Development group.  Kevin holds a B.A. in Spanish from Luther College and an M.A. in Social Foundations of Education from the University of Iowa. Kevin has a passion for travel and for learning about the cultures of the students he works with. He has traveled broadly throughout Latin America, Europe, and Asia.


Andrea Siebenmann, International Student and Scholar Advisor |

Andrea‘s primary responsibility is F-1 and J-1 student and scholar advising. She oversess part-time authorizations, monitors J scholar compliance with insurance requirements, processes letters of invitation, and co-manages the office email account. Andrea was born and raised in Slovakia where she earned her B.S. in Agriculture. She also holds a Master’s degree from Iowa State University in International Development. Prior to joining ISSS, she had worked with the association of U.S. and foreign-based community and technical colleges, providing international education services. Andrea’s native tongue is Slovak, and in addition to English she is also fluent in Czech, and has a basic reading proficiency in Russian. She loves to travel and learn about world cultures. Her previous travels took her to many European countries including Austria, United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Czech Republic, Poland, Hungary, Ukraine, as well as to a few countries on other continents such as Canada, Guatemala, Costa Rica, and China.



Pauline Beazer James

Shuhui Lin

Pauline Beazer James, International Student and Scholar Advisor |

Pauline is a native of the Caribbean who grew up in St. Thomas, United States Virgin Islands. She completed the B.A. in Sociology at the University of South Florida in Tampa and also holds two master’s degrees. The first is the M.Ed. in Educational Leadership from Regent University in Virginia Beach, VA. During her most recent studies at the University of the Incarnate Word in San Antonio Texas, she completed the M.A. in Education with dual emphases: International Education and International Entrepreneurship. Pauline is a veteran of the United States Military and has proudly served in the U.S. Army Active Duty, U.S. Air Force Reserve, and U.S. Army Reserve. In addition to personal and military travel in Europe, North America, and the Caribbean, Pauline completed a six-month graduate internship in South America at the U.S. Embassy in Santiago, Chile where her Spanish language skills played a significant role. The first internship segment was with the U.S. Department of State, Economic and Political Affairs and the second segment with the U.S. Department of Commerce, Foreign Commercial Service.  In addition to standard ISSS advising duties, Pauline shares responsibility for the office email account, processes Social Security employment verification letters, and produces new I-20s when changes of majors occur.


Shuhui Lin — Coordinator, International Student Support and Engagement  |

Splitting her time between ISSS and the Multicultural & International Student Support and Engagement Program (MISSEP), Lin focuses on the support and retention of international students who encounter academic difficulty and supports international student engagement across campus.  Lin provides assistance in following up with potentially at-risk students identified in the Excelling@Iowa survey or who are flagged for academic probation or poor progress at midterms and conducts assessments for international students.  She also work with international student organizations, and with the MISSEP to promote international student inclusion in student organization and activities.  Lin earned her Bachelor's degree in Communication Studies, and Master's degree in Higher Education and Student Affairs from the University of Iowa. She is from Guangzhou, China, speaks Cantonese and Mandarin, and is now learning Korean.


Taivna Mills

Taivna Mills

Hongyan Ji and
Ben Hoffman Ellis


Taivna Mills - International Services Associate |

Taivna serves as International Services Associate and her main responsibility is to process DS-2019 immigration documents for J-1 scholars and J-2 dependents and issue initial I-20/DS-2019 documents for newly admitted students. She also helps coordinate international student orientation events, the scholar housing program, provides workshops, and serves as ISSS liaison to the University of Iowa Anti-Violence Coalition.  She coordinates the one-to-one domestic and international student matching program, Friends Without Borders as well as the exchange student program Global Buddies. Taivna earned her Bachelor’s degree in Russian Studies at ONOL Foreign Language University in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia and Master’s degree in International Development Studies at Iowa State University. She is originally from Mongolia and speaks Mongolian and Russian.


Hongyan Ji - Life in Iowa Coordinator | 

Hongyan Ji is the student coordinator for the Life in Iowa program. Life in Iowa is designed to assist international students in adjusting to community life and the academic structure here at University of Iowa. It includes cultural events, academic sessions, as well as the career series. Hongyan was selected to be the Life in Iowa assistant starting in summer 2018. Though originally from Chengdu, China, she has lived in Guangzhou and Shanghai for many years with her family. She earned a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in history from Northeast Normal University (Changchun, Jilin province) and currently she is a student in the Computer Science Department of The University of Iowa. In her free time she enjoys exercising, cycling, sewing and cooking.


Ben Hoffman Ellis - Global Buddies Coordinator |

Ben assists in and around the ISSS office, primarily with conducting the one-to-one domestic and international student matching program, Friends Without Borders as well as the exchange student program Global Buddies, under Taivna Mills' direction. Where his role in ISSS helps to foster cultural exchange and interconnectivity on campus, he further emphasizes these goals as a host of the UI Department of German weekly program, the Kaffeeklatsch, a German language conversation hour open to all students. A senior studying German & International Relations, with a Minor in French, he also serves as president of the UI German Club. Previously he volunteered for Rotary International, assisting the training & cultural adjustment of high school exchange students to & from Iowa. A native of the state of Iowa, he studied in Austria and Germany two years, backpacked much of Europe & the US, and has been to Taiwan. Ben speaks German, Spanish, and is pursuing fluency in French.