F-1

As an F-1 visa holder, you must meet certain obligations to maintain your immigration status. Please review the sections below.

Reduced Course Load
Do not drop any courses without permission from International Services. Please refer to the Reduced Course Load page for more information.

Address Updates
Update your local mailing address in OASIS within 10 days of any change of local address.  This address must always be the physical address where you live.
View the “Updating Your Local US Address in OASIS Instructions” for assistance.

Travel
If you will travel outside the United States during your program, you should bring your I-20 to our office to request a travel signature using the Travel Signature Form.  Make sure that you are academically eligible to return to study at USFSM and that your visa is valid to re-enter the U.S.

If your visa has expired, you may still be able to re-enter the U.S. after a visit to Canada, Mexico, or adjacent islands.  Refer to the Travel Outside the United States to Contiguous Territories or Adjacent Islands Handout for more information.

Please see our updated Travel page for additional information.

Program Extensions
If you will not complete your academic program before the end date of your I-20 you will need to complete a program extension form. Valid reasons for extensions include change of major, unexpected research problems, change of research topic, and loss of credits transferred to USFSM. Program Extension Request for F-1 Students.

Valid Passport & Visa
Keep your passport valid for at least six months into the future at all times. Do not let your passport expire. Your visa must be valid at the time you enter the US. However, it can expire while you are here and you may remain in the US with an expired visa.

Employment
F-1 students are eligible to work on campus. You may work part time (20 hours per week or less) during the Fall and Spring semesters.  During authorized breaks, you may choose to work more hours.  Do not engage in any unauthorized off-campus employment; see Curricular Practical Training and/or Optional Practical Training.

University Obligations
Pay your tuition by the Friday of the first week of classes; see Paying Your Tuition.
Keep health insurance coverage in place at all times; see Student Health Services: International Health Insurance Requirements.

I-20 Changes
Keep I-20 valid at all times by notifying GEO of any changes to your name, country of citizenship, or sources of funding.

Enrollment

  • Enroll full-time during Fall and Spring Semesters:
    • 12 credit hours for undergraduates
    • 9 credit hours for graduate students
  • Enroll in only 3 credit hours of on-line courses to count toward your full time requirement during Fall and Spring Semesters.