Once accepted, a record is created in SEVIS (Student and Exchange Visitor Information System). The international student will then receive a Form I-20 or DS-2019 from their Designated School Official (DSO) or Alternate Responsible Officer (ARO) depending on their program of study and purpose for coming to the United States. This form reflects the information in the SEVIS record.
The Certificate of eligibility should reflect your major field of study, education level, and dates of attendance. If this information changes, your SEVIS record will need to be updated and a new I-20 or DS-2019 will need to be issued.
- F Students: Form I-20, Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant Student Status – For Academic and Language Students.
- J Students: Form D-2019, Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant Student Status – For Exchange Visitors
You are only authorized to attend the school listed on the Certificate of Eligibility.
As an F-1 or J-1 student, you must report your local address within 10 days of your move-in order to comply with immigration regulations. This is the street address where you are residing; box numbers cannot be used. This is done via myUK. The update in myUK will automatically notify our office and we will update your SEVIS record. If you have completed your degree and are pursuing Optional Practical Training, you must report your address within 10 days by completing the OPT Reporting e-form in iCAT.
Finishing Early or Before the I-20/DS-2019 End Date
The I-20 or DS-2019 end date is an estimated completion date. It may or may not be the date you actually complete all your degree requirements. The Form I-20/DS-2019 is only valid when you are pursuing the degree listed on your Form I-20/DS-2019. International students in F-1 or J-1 status cannot remain in the U.S. to pursue other educational objectives which are not part of the degree program listed on your Form I-20/DS-2019 (e.g. taking additional courses or credits, engaging in internships which don’t count toward the total credits required for the degree). If you complete your program early, you will begin the immigration grace period (30 days for J-1 students, 60 days for F-1 Students).
It is important that your passport be valid at all times. Make plans to renew it 6 months prior to its expiration. Check with your country’s embassy for instructions to renew your passport. Keep in mind that to enter the U.S., your passport must be valid a minimum of 6 months into the future.
A student visa is a travel document you receive from a U.S. consulate or embassy that gives you permission to travel to the United States. The visa stamp does not determine status or length or stay. If your visa stamp has expired, you are permitted to remain in the U.S. as long your SEVIS status is active. If you plan to travel outside the U.S. during your academic program and your visa stamp has expired, you must have it renewed at a U.S. consulate or embassy while outside of the U.S.
Upon entry to the U.S., a CBP officer will place an admission stamp on your passport and create an electronic I-94 record. The I-94 is official proof of your entry as a nonimmigrant. The admission stamp will indicate your date of entry, class of admission (F-1, J-1) and admitted until date (D/S).
D/S is a notation made at the port of entry on your I-20 and Form I-94 Arrival-Departure Record. You are admitted to the US for "duration of status," which is defined as the time during which you are pursuing a full course of study and making normal progress toward your degree. This also includes the time you may be on Optional Practical Training (OPT) after you complete your studies (if you qualify and are so authorized), plus a 60 day grace period.
Once you have entered the U.S., you will be able to access your I-94 admission record online here. You will be required to enter your passport number and entry information in order to obtain your I-94 record.
When applying for jobs on campus or requesting benefits from agencies such as the Social Security Administration, Driver’s License Office, or U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, you will print the record from the CBP website. If there is an error or mistake on your I-94, please contact UKIC for assistance in locating the nearest CBP office.