Entry into the United States can be confusing for many people. Here are some resources to avoid confusion and complication when entering the country in the future:
Visas and Passports
If you are an F-1 or J-1 student or scholar, please ensure that you enter the United States using your F-1 or J-1 visa. If you enter on a tourist visa or visa waiver, you will end your F-1 or J-1 status in the United States and no longer be eligible for the benefits of your student or exchange visitor status, including employment and university enrollment. Individuals who have dual citizenship should use the same country passport each time they enter the United States to avoid complications in immigration applications in the future.
Upon arrival in the United States, some airports have Automated Passport Control or self-check kiosks for easy entry in the country. International students and scholars should not use these kiosks in an effort to speed up the process of going through immigration. If you use the automated passport control, you will be automatically be entered in the U.S. as a tourist or visa waiver participant, which will cause problems for your immigration status, as outline in the previous paragraph.
All individuals going through TSA screenings in the United States have rights to protect their privacy. Students and scholars who are concerned about going through security screenings for religious, gender, physical, or medical reasons, should refer to the TSA website for guidance and information about their rights as travelers.