F-1 And J-1 Student Program Extension Procedures

A student is eligible for a program extension if it is established that the delay in completing the program requirements has been caused by a compelling academic reason (such as changes in major field of study, research topic or unexpected research problems) or documented medical reasons.

When is a program extension necessary?

  • For students in F-1 status: a program extension is necessary if you plan on studying past the date in the Program of Study section of your current Form I-20.

  • For students in J-1 status: a program extension is necessary if you plan on studying past the program end date in item #3 of your Form DS-2019.

The end date listed on either Form I-20 or DS-2019 is considered the "expiration" date of your immigration status. If you do not apply for a program extension and you remain in the U.S., you will be considered to be in violation of your immigration status.

How to apply

Please see the Program Extension Form (include link to Forms page). Submit the required documentation to OIS at least 30 to 60 days prior to the expiration of your status as shown on your I-20 or DS-2019.

Departure

Departing GSU

Submit a Student Departure Form when you will no longer need the benefits associated with your non-immigrant status that is currently sponsored by GSU. If you are an international student, but not sponsored by GSU, please still submit this form when any of the following situations below apply.

Students should submit the Departure Verification Form for the following situations:

  • transferring to another U.S. institution (see below)

  • will end your OPT or AT early

  • have completed your program and will return home

  • have completed OPT or AT and will return home

  • have changed your immigration status

Transfer out of GSU

If you are transferring out of Governors State University to another school in the United States, please follow the procedures outlined below.

Once you have been admitted to another school, schedule an appointment to meet with an OIS advisor.  In your discussion with an OIS advisor you will decide on a "SEVIS release date" which OIS will enter into the SEVIS database. After the release date, the new school will be able to generate an I-20 for you. Be sure to discuss any travel or work plans you have with your OIS advisor as that will affect the transfer procedure.

Documents OIS needs in order to transfer your SEVIS record:

  • Admission letter from the new university stating the start date of your program

  • Transfer Verification Form from your new university

  • Student Departure Form

As an F-1 student, if you plan on attending another U.S. institution, your new academic program must begin within five months of your completion date or end date of OPT. However, you must complete the transfer process within the 60-day grace period of your completion date or 60-day grace period after your completion of OPT. You must contact your international student advisor at your new U.S. institution within 15 days of the new program start date.

As a J-1 student, You must complete the transfer process within the 30-day grace period of your completion date or 30-day grace period after your completion of Academic Training. You must contact your international student advisor at your new U.S. institution within 30 days of the program start date.