Length of Stay/Program Extension
Duration of Status for F-1 Students (D/S)
F-1 students are normally admitted into the U.S. for the entire period of one academic program plus authorized post-completion practical training plus a 60-day grace period. This is noted on the I-94 as D/S (Duration of Status). To be "in status" means that 1) you are pursuing a fulltime course of study and that 2) you are making normal, reasonable progress toward your degree objective. Please note on your I-20 in item 5 the anticipated date of "program completion." Status may be extended 1) by moving into a higher level of studies and receiving a new I-20 for the new program, 2) by making a timely application for post-completion practical training following completion of all program requirements, and 3) by getting permission from Cedarville University for additional time to complete the current program, if required. At the final conclusion of your studies in the U.S., you have 60 days to remain on the F-1 status in order to arrange for your travels back to your home country. Please note that program completion is not always the same as graduation.
If F-1 students transfer to Cedarville from another school or intend to transfer elsewhere from here, they must seek contact with the office of international student services at Cedarville and an international student advisor at the other institution to effect the transfer. The new school must issue an I-20, and the old school must release the student from its program and assign a "release date" in the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS). Citizenship and Immigration Services (CIS) approval is not required.
Whenever you plan to travel outside the U.S. and then return to continue at Cedarville, you must have your Form DS-2019 endorsed by a designated school official (DSO) located in the office of international student services. Please bring your document to the office of international student services at least one to two weeks prior to your date of departure from Cedarville. Bring your current hospitalization and medical insurance I.D. card with you to demonstrate that you are in compliance with health insurance requirements.
Remember that you may need to apply for a new visa while on your travels. Examine the visa stamp in your passport to determine if it will be valid on the day you plan to return to the U.S. If not, be sure to consider the additional time you may require to make the visa application at a U.S. consular office overseas. Carry with you evidence that you have been maintaining your immigration status while in the U.S.
Student Employment (while in F-1)
F-1 students in good academic standing and maintaining student visa status may be eligible for certain forms of employment, training, academic internships, and professional externships. These are not "work visas."
Always consult with the the office of international student services if you have questions about employment opportunities or plans.