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Sponsorship for Legal Permanent Residence

All University-sponsored employees who seek permanent residence in the United States must use a university-approved attorney; a list is available from the Office of International Student and Scholar Services. The applicant’s department must follow the procedures and check-list prepared by the Office of International Student and Scholar Services for this purpose, including maintaining the appropriate recruitment and advertisement records for the required five years.

  • Tenured and tenure-eligible teaching faculty: The University will sponsor tenured and tenure-eligible teaching faculty for permanent residence in the United States at the request of the appropriate department, when that request is endorsed by the School dean. All advertisement and recruitment costs must be paid by the sponsoring department; attorney costs can be paid by the employee or the department (subject to university limits) or a combination of the two.
  • Research staff and non-tenure eligible faculty: The University will sponsor highly qualified non-tenure-eligible faculty and research staff for permanent residence upon the recommendation of his/her department or center director when the request has been endorsed by the School Dean and Provost or the Vice President for Research, respectively. Such a recommendation should be predicated on the following evidence: a) the individual should have been employed at Northwestern for at least two years, preferably in the same position; and b) there is a high likelihood of continued funding for the position for at least three additional years.
  • Non-research staff: In extraordinary circumstances, the University may choose to sponsor for permanent residence a staff member whose position is not within the domain of the Vice President for Research. Such requests must be submitted to the Dean of the School or Vice-president in which the employee's office is situated and will be granted when it is clear that the staff member's contributions to the functioning of the University would be difficult, if not impossible, to be filled by anyone else.
  • Post-Doctoral Employees: The University will not sponsor post-doctoral employees for permanent residence.

Responsible Office: Office of the Provost

Who Needs to Know This Policy: All Northwestern faculty members


For a complete description of this Policy and the process for becoming a Legal Permanent Resident, or for questions on this Policy, please visit the Office of International Student and Scholar Services website.

Dated: May 31, 2013