Travel Outside of the US

If you plan to travel outside of the US, your international student advisor must sign page 3 of your I-20. Please allow 3 days for a travel signature to be processed. The travel endorsement signature must be updated each and every time you leave the country during your studies.

Visa Renewal Your visa cannot be renewed from inside the US. In order to renew your F-1 student visa, you should make an appointment with a US embassy or consulate in your home country.

Before you apply for a visa renewal, you should understand the process and rules governing the renewal of a US visa. Please read the following very carefully and contact International Student Services (ISS) if you need more information or assistance.

Documents you must provide to ISS upon returning to the US:

  • Verify your I-94 arrival information online
  • New stamped I-20
  • New visa
  • New passport

Student visas are only given to persons who can demonstrate to the consul that they intend to return permanently to their home countries.

You must prove that you are making full-time progress toward completing your educational or professional objective; you must also demonstrate that you are still able to finance the cost of your educational and living expenses in the US.

Consuls are impersonal when administering laws; do not try to negotiate or discuss personal matters during your meeting.

Be Prepared for the Consul
Prepare thoroughly for your meeting with the consul by organizing your paperwork.

Make sure that you have the following items or evidence:

  • Bring your current I-20 (endorsed for re-entry to the US), a valid passport and all evidence of financial support.
  • Be able to account for the elapsed time since your last interview with the consul.
  • Be ready to prove that you have been making progress towards completing your educational or professional objective that brought you to the US
  • Bring transcripts from every school that you have attended in the US. If your status as a full-time student isn’t clear from your transcript(s), request an enrollment verification letter from SAS.
  • If you changed majors, be prepared to prove that your new major better suits career opportunities in your home country.
  • In the event that you have changed schools, be prepared to explain your decision. If the new school is at a higher academic level, emphasize the point.

Demonstrate to the consul that you will return home permanently after you complete your studies. Present papers that prove your strong ties to your country, such as frequent trips, deeded property or family business ownership.

  • If your program of study is in great demand in your home country, request a letter from a potential employer indicating their interest in hiring people with degrees like the one that you will earn.
  • Do not emphasize any ties that you have to the US.
  • Do not talk about working in the US unless you have secured an internship, fellowship or employment authorization from the USCIS.
New I-94 Process Starts April 30

Get ready for a new I-94 process for arrivals and departures, rolling out at the end of April. read more