Immigration Information for Currently Enrolled Students

Maintaining Your Immigration Status

Have you been notified of an academic violation (low GPA, academic dishonesty etc.)? Please view the webpage on Academic Dismissal, Integrity, and Immigration impacts for more on your rights and responsibilities.

Full-time Enrollment

F-1 or J-1 students must enroll full-time every fall or spring semester to maintain their immigration status.  Full-time enrollment is defined as:

  • Undergraduate students - 12 credit per semester minimum
    • 9 out 12 credits must be in person or hybrid
  • Graduate students - 9 credit per semester minimum
    • 6 out of 9 credits must be in person or hybrid

If students meet one of the four less than full-time enrollment exceptions, they may request approval for a Reduced Course Load to maintain their immigration status.

Can I remain in the U.S. if my F-1 or J-1 visa is expired?

Your F-1 or J-1 visa must be valid the day you enter the U.S. - Your F-1 or J-1 visa is similar to a "key" that you would use to enter a house (enter the U.S.).  To get into your house, you must have a valid key (an unexpired F-1 or J-1 visa, unexpired passport, and an unexpired immigration document I-20 or DS-2019).  Once you are in the house (in the U.S.), you no longer need to use the key to go from room to room.  The same way with the F-1 or J-1 visa.  Once you are in the U.S., it is not a problem if your F-1 or J-1 visa expires.  You do not have to exit the U.S. by your visa expiration date.  F-1 or J-1 status students are allowed to remain in the U.S. for "Duration of Status".  If you are outside the U.S. and your F-1 or J-1 visa is expired, you must renew your visa before you can re-enter the U.S.

Remaining in the U.S. for "Duration of Status" - F-1 or J-1 students may remain in the U.S. as long as they are maintaining "status" (see the Maintaining Status section), even if their F-1 or J-1 visa has expired.