Maintaining Visa Status

The International Programs Office is glad to advise you on maintaining your legal student status, and we welcome questions you have regarding your visa requirements. However, students are ultimately responsible for maintaining legal student visa status. 
 
Listed below are the basic requirements to follow in order to maintain your F-1 student visa:
 
  • Keep your passport valid at all times.
  • Have your Form I-20 signed each year by a DSO (IPO staff). Keep all versions of your Form I-20 for your records or future use.
  • Maintain full-time enrollment every fall and spring semester. Full-time enrollment is not required in the interim or summer terms. Full-time for undergraduate students is 12 credit hours.
  • Complete academic study by the completion of studies date on the Form I-20. If you need more time, visit the IPO before your end-date to extend your program. 
  • Notify the IPO immediately of any planned or unplanned breaks or interruptions in your studies. Such breaks in study can impact your ability to stay in the U.S. and/or apply for immigration benefits in the future.
  • Do not begin any employment without legal work authorization from the International Programs Office or U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. We must update your Form I-20 before you are allowed to begin work. See International Student Employment information for more details.
  • Notify the IPO if you change your major, address or phone number. 
Sponsored Students on J-1 Visas (Form DS-2019):
Please visit with your sponsor advisor for questions related to maintaining your J-1 student visa.