Maintain F-1 Status

Under United States immigration law, it is your personal responsibility to maintain lawful F-1 student status.

The International Student Office at D'Youville College is required to report to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in SEVIS when an F-1 student does not fulfill the following requirements of status. In order to maintain lawful student status, please make sure you follow these guidelines:

  1. Remain a full time student and make progress towards your degree 12 credits undergraduate/12 credits combined BS/MS programs, 9 credits graduate (The exception is for winter and summer break. A student may take courses part time, full time, or not at all) *You must contact the ISO BEFORE you withdraw or stop attending classes.
  2. Reduced Course Load
    1. Only under very limited circumstances may a student reduce their course load.
    2. Students may reduce their course load below full time for 2 reasons: either academic or medical.
    3. Academic reasons can be initial difficulty with the English language or unfair American teaching methods. The course load can be reduced to 6 credit hours for only one term. Students must resume a full course load the following semester.
    4. A student can have a reduced course load or take no classes at all due to a medical reason. You must see the ISO before you decide to take a medical leave of absence (this also includes a maternity leave) The student must provide a letter from a licensed Medical Doctor BEFORE dropping classes.
    5. Students must notify the ISO before they return to avoid falling out of status
  3. Attend the school you were authorized to attend. You must attend the school whose I-20 you used to enter the United States or the school your I-20 was transferred to.
  4. Only one distance course may be counted towards the full course of student requirement per term. If the minimum full time requirement is 12 credits, 9 must be in the classroom and one course may be distance.
  5. Keep your passport valid at all times.
  6. Have an accurate and valid I-20. Item #5 on your I-20 shows the expected date of completion. If the expiry date is approaching and you need additional time to complete your degree you must apply for an extension at the International Student Office BEFORE the expiry date.
  7. Do not work without proper employment authorization.
    1. Students are allowed to work on campus, 20 hours or less while school is in session.
    2. Off campus employment is very limited and requires authorization from the International Student Office and Homeland Security. Please see the ISO for further information.
  8. You have 10 days to report a change in address to the ISO. You may change your address at the Registrar's Office and the ISO will be notified. *For those students on clinical placements you must let the ISO know where you are doing your clinical placement and where you are living within 10 days of moving.
  9. If a student is planning on transferring from D'Youville to another school they must see the ISO before doing so.
    1. If a student has fallen out of status they are ineligible to transfer. You can either apply for reinstatement from DHS or depart and re-enter the U.S. with an initial I-20 for a new program at the new school.
    2. Upon completion of a degree program, a student may remain in the U.S. for up to 5 months maximum when transferring to a new degree program.
  10. You must depart the country within 60 days of your program completion date or OPT end date. *Please make sure to turn over your I-94 as you are exiting the country.
  11. You must obtain a change of education level to begin a new program of study, before you complete your current program.
  12. You must file a U.S. tax return every year, even if you did not receive any income.

Consequences of Failure to Maintain Status: The PDSO (Primary Designated School Official) must update a student's record every semester with SEVIS. If a student fails to maintain status they lose the privileges of their student visa and become subject to deportations, denial of re-entry in the United States, the inability to change education levels, denial of OPT and possible denial of future visas.

Helpful Links

Get to Know Us

  • Practical Training

    You'll get hands-on experience working for a US company or organization during practical training.
    Read more

  • Travel & Re-entry

    Learn about how your F-1 Student status and travel to Canada, Mexico or the Caribbean Islands.
    Read more

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