Tri-Valley University (TVU) letter written by its President regarding ICE’s decision to withdraw the school’s SEVIS approval.

Below is the text of the Tri-Valley University (TVU) letter written by its President about ICE’s decision to withdraw the school’s SEVIS approval. The letter, which has been redacted, includes responses to the unresolved issues listed in the SEVP Notice of Intent to Withdraw letter. 
– UPDATED 01/17/2012 – EDITED OUT MOST NAMES.

U.S. Department of Homeland Security

Potomac Center North

500 12th Street SW, Washington, DC 20536

 

Susan Su, President

Tri-Valley University

405 Boulder Ct #700 – 800

Pleasanton CA 94566

Dear Ms. Dianna Currie;

 

I am writing to you regarding the Notice of Intent
to Withdraw of the approval for attendance of nonimmigrant students of
Tri-Valley University which was hand delivered to my house on 01/19/2011. Upon
the decision of SEVP to withdraw TVU’s SEVIS approval; we would like to submit
the following written reasons under oath why TVU’s shall not be withdraw from
SEVP approval.

Since its inception in March 2008, Tri-Valley
University is able to implement a cutting-edge technology of instruction model,
which allows the live broadcasting of class with video, audio, desk-top
sharing, chatting, document sharing, chat, recording features.  Since our SEVP approval to enroll
international students a year later in Feb 2009, the University has upgraded to
the most advanced enterprise version which is capable of monitoring every second
a student entering and leaving the classroom. We also reinforce student
classroom attendance by requiring students showing their face in the camera to
check the attendance.  In Fall of 2010,
approximate 90% of TVU 800 or so registered students attending weekly class
meeting. According to the decision made by SEVP Director  (http://www.region12south.nafsa.org/CaliforniaCommunityCollegesSEVPannouncement.pdf
) as shown in Exhibit 1, item 6:

In authorizing this flexibility for schools
in determining the full course of study available, SEVP wishes that schools are
clear on the available parameters of online training available to credit
towards a full course of study
.”
With regarding the on-line class attendance 8 CFR 214.2(f) (6) (G), “ For
F-1 Students enrolled in classes for credit or classroom hours, no more than
the equivalent of one class or three credits per session, term, semester,
trimester, or quarter may be counted toward the full course of study
requirement if the class is taken on-line or through distance education and
does not require the student’s physical attendance for classes, examination or
other purposes integral to completion of the class
.”  The decision furthermore
approve: “There is no limit enrolled in classes for credit or classroom hours can
be counted toward a full course of study if the school can confirm the physical
presence and participation of students. SEVP encourage schools to make maximum
use of monitored online training as feasible
”.  Item 8 even says: “SEVP is aware that there are
other stated and college systems in the United States facing similar issues.
The Director will consider allowing similar ameliorative standards of contacted
by a state’s department of education or an administrative office of a community
college system
.”  However, TVU’s
instruction is also quite different from the on-line program content which
takes a textbook material and edits into reading and questions and answer
section (on-line classes have no real lectures, just reading and E-mail back
and forth between the students and the instructors). All TVU’s classes are
regular classic classroom instructor content with power point presentation on
each textbook chapter with live class lectures and live classroom interaction
between students and instructors. With the cutting-edge technology to live
broadcasting class meeting at TVU, people at work can attend class and house
wife can also attend class while staying at home.

With this technology, and good quality-content and
practical course, as well as TVU’s referral system ( each single TVU student
project his/her computer screen on the wall to turn his/her home into a TVU
classroom, many family and friend of TVU students join TVU also), the students
enrollments have been exponentially grow . As the quick rising curve occurring
just recent, a strong and effective administration system is in the process of
forming, the University does have issues from the growing pain. We would like
to address the 8 issues pointed out in your letter. Some are misunderstandings;
some are our administrative system ignorance and part of the growing pain and
have been working on to resolve.

 Response to Issue 1:  Failure to Comply with 8 CFR 214.3(g) (1)
without a subpoena.

Since the inception on St. Patrick day on March 17,
2008, Tri-Valley University’s students are mainly US citizens. With the SEVP
approval on 02/17/2009 a year later, TVU does not have student dormitories to
accommodate international students who come to the campus directly. The first
contract TVU signed regarding international students was with ABS consultancy
who originally request for an exclusive contract to represent TVU in India  to take the full responsibility of all TVU’s
international students (but was not approved by the President).  TVU signed a contract with ABS that they will
receive 20% of each international student’s tuition fee as the referral fee,
and their responsibility including recruiting, referring students, VISA
interview consultant, status change consultant, reinstatement consultant as
well as airport pickup and accommodation. TVU’s first hundred of international
students are all taken care of by ABS consultancy. From Application, they are
all input the ABS consultancy’s CA address. When students arrive in California,
they were picked up by ABS consultancy, temperately stay with them for couple
of day. ABS then arranged them to stay at an apt in the same complex which ABS
rent and charge the student for rental fee.

That staff’s ([NAME REMOVED] who actually committed
stealing money and cheated student and was fired) misunderstanding of concealing
the fact that the student who live outside of in California is apparently his limited
knowledge and interpretation. “Conceal a fact” claim is never true (but indeed
a vicious attempt to tear the university down by that fires staff teamed with
another criminal person 
 [NAME REMOVED]).  The University never told any staff in that way.
As a matter of fact TVU’s ADM office wrote numerous DMV verification letters to
many different states of our government agency stating that the student’s
residence at a different state but attending classes over here. TVU later on
hired staff to update student actual physical address, not the consultant
address. With the frequent change of student address and quick growth of
admitted students; the staff never completed the work.  

As regulation 8 CFR 214.4 (a) (2) (i) (iii) states,
we are actually in compliance with this regulation: the University communicated
with all students through ABS address. 
Letters mailed to ABS address at: 555 E El Camino Real APT 415,
Sunnyvale, CA; ABS members will FedEx to student’s address with their own
expense. With this practice, TVU has indeed honored the controlling regulation:
8 CFR 214.4 (a) (2) (i) (iii), “In the event the student or his or her
dependents cannot receive mail at such physical residence, the school must
provide a mailing address in SEVIS”. The address input in SEVIS is exact
provided by the school, and effective working, and is the school legally
contracted and give the authorization of the responsibility. 

Response to Issue 2:  Failure to comply with 8 CFR 214.3 (g) (2).
See 8 CFR 214.4 (a) (2) (ii), Controlling regulation: 8 CFR 214.4 (a) (2) (ii),
214.3(g) (2), 214.3(h)(3), 214.2(f)(6)(i)(G).  

TVU’s instruction model’s compliance with regulation 8 CFR 214.2 (f)
(6)(i) (G) to fulfill the requirement of student physical attendance have
addressed in the 2nd paragraph.  

TVU honoring regulation CFR 214.3 (g) (i) with the ABS consultancy
address input as the international students contact has been elaborated above
in Response to Issue 1.

On page4 paragraph 4 of your letter, the letter saying that beginning
June 2010, HIS agents has observed the building: 4455 Stonebridge Dr,
Pleasanton for 6 days, but not find a single class going on over there. It has
to be true, because TVU has moved into Pleasanton Unified School District
starting in Sept, 2009, with ADM office, and many classrooms available in need
bases.

However we did fail to report to SEVIS about the
address change within 21 days, mainly because TVU has been considered purchasing
a permanent campus building for quite a long time, and has considered several
buildings including 4455 Stonebridge DR (with bank loan not approved), untill
finally bought 405 Boulder Ct (similar to 4455 Stonebridge Dr but only
one-third of the price and is a brand new building). With every instructor
teaches with TVU instruction system able to live broadcasting class meeting,
TVU’s instructor can be located at all different states of the US, and they are
teaching everyday classes inside TVU’s classrooms. If students come to campus
in Pleasanton, the live class can be projected on the wall for live interaction
with an instructor who is teaching at New York. 
The truth is that ever since the inception, TVU have been offering
quality and practical class instructions with the dual-module of cutting-edge
instructional model.  At the time, when
we applied for SEVP approval, our instructional model published on TVU’s
website since the first day of TVU inception is already a public knowledge. We
advise every student, that they are welcome to come here, if they can not make
it, they do not need to, because they will see exactly the same in their
computer as everyone who come here on campus.

Even since the SEVP approval for enroll
international students, TVU has been strongly reinforcing real classroom
attendance, the President has sent multiple E-mails to both entire TVU students
body, as well as TVU instructors on strictly monitoring and checking student
attendance. However due to the quick growth pain, the administrative team do
not catch up, also some students working as student assistant in the office has
taken advantage of selling I20 or CPT for students money, ask students to give
money to their account, and give students I20 ([NAME REMOVED] and [NAME REMOVED]).
 [NAME REMOVED] is believed to be one
of those students who did not even register a class, but obtain an I20 by the cheating
office student assistant, who later on also feed wrong, threatening and
defamation information (such as ABS address issues is just one) to ICE and many
TVU students. We have fired them, later filed a police report against the two
fraud individual.  Student  
[NAME REMOVED]is one
of the student victims.    

With regarding to student [NAME REMOVED] interview, we reviewed the transcript. Students did attend the classes
remotely, but he is not so sure about the legitimacy of TVU’s instructional
module by hearing something from some anonymous internet law forum discussion,
so he tried to lie that he did come to California to attend the classes to
cover. That is the main reason for his deportation, after we investigate the
situation, we did give him another initial I20 for him to reapply for a student
VISA, with an explanation and verification letter stating that he did resident
in Chicago and attends the class here.

Response to Issue
3:  Willful issuance by a DSO of a false
statement including wrongful certification of a statement by signature, in
connection with a student’s school transfer or application for employment or
practical training.  See 8 CFR 214.4 (a)
(2) (v).

Control
regulation: 8 CFR 214.4 (a) (2) (v), 214.2(f)(9), 214.2 (f) (10)

TVU’s Mission includes quality academic principle, integrated
with practical industry application as well as Christian world view. Tri-Valley
University has very unique academic programs to facility the University’s Mission
and Institutional Purpose. The continuum education nature of integration of academic
and industrious application is reflected from every single course content to
every academic degree program curriculum and requirement. To facility the
objective of each degree program, a TVU student must work in industry to gain
real working and application experiences before they can be awarded a TVU degree.
The class schedule and education model allows the realization of the curriculum
requirement, class meeting are at evenings, and also can be accessed anywhere
remotely, class meeting are recorded. As a continuum education university, TVU’s
CPT also differs from any other universities. Other universities make CPT a
course (or a research course) for student to make tuition payment to enroll.  At TVU, international student just register 3
regular courses to keep the full-time student status, all classes are in the
evening, and all student is encouraged, recommended and helped by the university
to find a job in industry to gain real application experience in order to fulfill
the industry application requirement of the degree curriculum and to have a
TVU’s degree. So at TVU, CPT has no trimester limits. Student registered for
399 research course is also different form CPT, for a research course, a
student will be assigned an individual instructor and  work with him/her toward a research report,
which is separated from CPT, while CPT is part of the entire degree curriculum
requirement of real industry experience. Our CPT normally input is to: “Fulfill
the degree requirement of the curriculum requirement”. Only a few student who
also find a research topic form their work decide to do research and write a
thesis related to his work. 

For CPT approval, a student needs to submit an
offer letter. We can not judge the real job a student does at a company by the
website description of the company in general. For an example, a software
company like CISCO mainly running business in software programming also has
human resource department, accounting department, may hiring people not only from
Computer Science major, but also hiring student with major in business
administration, accounting and mechanical engineering etc field as well.  Our CPT staff is instructed to approve
student’s CPT with regarding to their job offer letter. To authorize a student
to work is exactly fulfill TVU curriculum requirement of industry working
experience.

Response to Issue
4:  Conduct on the part of a DSO that
does not comply with the regulation. See 8 CFR 214.4(a)(2)(vi). Controlling
regulations: 8 CFR 214.4(a)(2)(vi), 214.2(f)(9)(i), 214.3(1)(1)

For any SEVIS approved university, such as UC
Berkeley, students work as Teaching Assistant and Research Assistant is a
common practice in each department. With TVU’s continue education nature, most
TVU’s Ph.D. student are working in industry already (Those international
students are on CPT). TVU has a unique position called Teaching Associated is
for TVU’s graduate student to teach classes, partially also is also a
curriculum requirement of the Ph.D. degree to gain leadership and academic
teaching experience (also reduce their tuition fee).  With TVU’s instructional model, every single
TVU student can simply project his/her computer screen on the wall, and make it
a TVU live classroom, every single TVU student’s computer and home is a small
TVU campus. We do have on-site employments which are student assistant
positions in the administration office, such as in the admission department,
registration department and record department.  

When TVU initially submit I-17 and receive SEVIS
approval, there is no full-time PSDO and DSO at all; we have the President as
the DSO and her sister Sophie Su as the PDSO and her husband Vince Wang as another
DSO (who are all volunteer workers as in TVU’s five-year strategic plan). After
approval, we have advertised for long time for qualified person with SEVIS
experience to join the team. We have added Ms. [NAME REMOVED] as the DSO soon
later, however she was threatened by the real criminal student assistant ([NAME REMOVED] and [NAME REMOVED]) and quit her job due to fear. From beginning both
Sophie Su and Vince Wang with their other full-time job commitment can only
stop by the office part-time and in need basis. For the first year or so, TVU
also does not have many international students, all international students
affairs are performed by Dr. [NAME REMOVED] as a DSO. Later on, as their role also as
an admission officer and registration office responsibility increase with the
admitted students, the President assigns each one of them two student assistants
because they cannot commit full-time to TVU’s international students. However
those student assistant have never be delegated the designation of the DSO and
PDSO.  Every day, they were only given a
computer screen. They are strictly trained and instructed to just typing
previous designed content and word inside the SEVIS window, not allow modifying
anything, not give the password and user name to login at all. The President
holds all the account login information, student assistant is only given the
screen to work on, and they are highly supervised and strictly monitored by the
President in daily basis, their work is also reviewed daily by the President.  

Response to Issue
5:  Failure to provide SEVP paper copies
of the school’s Form I-17 bearing the names, titles and signatures of DSOs as
required by 214.3 (1) (2). See 8 CFR 214.4 (a) (2) (vii)
Controlling regulation:
8 CFR 214.4(a) (2) (viii), 214.3 (1) (2)

Already addressed in response to Issue 4 .

Response to Issue
6:  Failure to submit statements of DSOs
as required by 8 CFR 214.3 (1) (3), See 8 CFR 214.4 (a) (2) (ix). Controlling
regulation: 8 CFR 214.4 (a) (2) (ix), 214.3 (1)(3).

Already addressed in response to Issue 4 .

Response to Issue
7:  Issuance of Forms I-20 to aliens who
will not be enrolled in or carry full courses of study, as defined in 8 CFR
214.2 (f) (6). See 8 CFR 214.4 (a) (2) (xi)

Controlling
regulations: 8 CFR 214.4 (a) (2) (xi), 214.2 (f)(6)

The first paragraph of this
letter has elaborated TVU’s class instruction model, the class attendance
monitoring as well as the attendance rate from the previous term and the
legitimacy of this instructional model. In the early stage of the university, first
year, TVU only have US students who are working full-time taking classes, if
they request class absent, sometimes, the President give them permission, with
the strict requirement that the student has to study the class meeting recorded
video, and complete their homework assignment and have good grade in midterm
and final exam (they are responsible to contact with the instructor to arrange
individual study if needed).   

With the increasing of the
International students’ enrollment, The President has sent multiple E-mails to
all TVU students to make the real life class attendance mandatory, E-mails to
all Instructors to strictly monitor student class attendance. TVU’s majority
students are post-educated adult and individuals, normally all requirements are
done in a willing manner, if the President order everyone to come to class,
majority of them will honor that requirement willingly. As a matter of fact,
our virtual classroom data show that majority of TVU student in the previous
term, close to 90% registered international students are attending weekly class
meeting.  The virtual class room
monitoring has small issues if a student or a faculty is not properly trained,
when a student enter the classroom, if he/she forget to input his own name,
what the system sees is just an “Attendee No”, can not identify who the student
is. Also some student may leave the class in the middle, and relogin in couple
of minutes later. We are also plan to fix all of these issues in the coming
term, by training all TVU students and instructors on how to check in the
attendance in the first 30 minute of each class meeting, with the students showing
face in camera and full name recorded.

Student [NAME REMOVED] and [NAME REMOVED] cases are just two individuals, and one who never attend the
class remains in India, TVU never give him another chance of I20. [NAME REMOVED] who did attend classes was given another chance for VISA interview.

Response to Issue
8:  Failure of a DSO to notify SEVP of
material changes, such as changes to the school’s name, address, or curriculum
changes that represent material changes to the scope of institution offerings
as required by 8 CFR 214.3 (f) (1), See 8 CFR 214.4 (a) (2) (xix).  Controlling regulations: 8 CFR 214.4 (a) (2)
(xix), 214.3(f)(1), 214.3(g)(2)(i), 214.3(h)(3).

Tri-Valley University’s  academic program, class content, degree
curriculum are keeping improving and updating almost in daily, weekly bases, so
does the website and Catalog which are modified and improved accordingly. We
did not receive any instruction on report to SEVIS on daily and weekly class
modification and program changes, as well as location changes.  We received E-mail notice form SEVIS, that
every two years the school will need submit I-17 for recertification. This Feb
17th, 2011, is our two year recertification time, we plan to update
all of the change (including academic program change, curriculum changes and
location changes) to SEVIS at that time.

With the recent increasing of
student enrollments, the administration team suffers from grow pain, and in the
process of catching up. There are many places and issues we need to improve. We
feel that we shall be given an opportunity to report our change of address in
Feb. 2011. The intention to terminate all TVU active student SEVIS status and
school’s access is extremely unfair. We all aware that majority of TVU students
are post-educated intellectual, and have done nothing wrong and illegal. In
case the President decides to forsake the school, these students need to
transfer to good University in US to continue their education.

As for now, we would like you to
review the reasons which I submit above for why SEVP shall not withdraw
Tri-Valley University’s approval. 

 

Sincerely;

 

Susan Su, President

Tri-Valley University

 




 

Exhibit 1 Decision by SEVP Director Full Course of Study: California
Community Colleges Crisis.

<span>%d</span> bloggers like this: