A program extension is intended for students who are unable to complete their degree program by the completion date indicated on the I-20 or DS-2019.
If you are currently maintaining status and making normal progress toward completing your degree but are unable to complete your program within the specified period on your I-20 or DS-2019, you must apply for an extension prior to the expiration date. Failure to do this will be a violation of your status.
An extension must be based on a documented illness or compelling academic reasons, such as changes of major or research topics, unexpected research problems or credits lost in transfer of schools. Delays caused by academic probation, suspension or oversight are not acceptable reasons for program extensions.
The period of validity of the visa in your passport does not affect your stay in the U.S. It simply refers to the period during which you may enter the U.S. The notation "D/S" on your form I-94 (Arrival/Departure Record) means you can stay in the U.S. no later than the date specified on your I-20 or DS-2019 for the completion of your program of study, as long as you are enrolled at the university and have not violated your student status.
Extension Request Documentation
When completing for the e-form in iCAT you will be required to submit the following documentation:
Proof of Funding
- Updated assistantship letter, bank statement, letter from sponsor, etc.
- If U.S. Sponsor: Please submit a letter verifying he/she is willing to support you and a copy of his/her last bank account statement on bank letterhead
- If Personal Funds: Submit a copy of a recent bank statement showing liquid assets to cover the period of extension. The statement must be in English.
- Government Sponsor: Updated financial guarantee with new end date.
- If Assistantship: Submit a letter from your department confirming your continued appointment and funding including dates of appointment, tuition remission, and total stipend amount for the duration of the extension.
- The recommendation should explain how the delay was unexpected and outside of the student’s control.
- Meet with your advisor to discuss your extension and expected completion date before submitting the extension request in iCAT.
- If the extension is needed due to illness, you must include a letter from your US health care provider (medical doctor, doctor of osteopathy or licensed clinical psychologist) indicating that your health issue prevented your normal academic progress.
To request an I-20 or DS-2019 extension, please submit the online request form in iCAT at least two weeks prior to the program end date listed on your document.
For those on UK payroll: To continue on payroll, you must take your extended I-20 or DS-2019, passport and I-94 to 21 Scovell Hall to complete another I-9.