Office of International Engagement


Key Responsibilities of F-1 and J-1 Students

  • Remain a full-time student, or discuss any under-enrollment BEFORE the semester begins or BEFORE you drop a course during the semester.        

    • 12 or more credit hours are full-time for undergraduate students

    • 9 or more credit hours are full-time for graduate students

    • CIEP Students should contact the CIEP office staff if they have questions about full-time CIEP enrollment or enrollment in part-CIEP and part-credit bearing courses

  • Never work off-campus without authorization from the Immigration & Advising Coordinator.

  • Check the program end date of your I-20 or DS-2019 form monthly and request an extension of your status at least two weeks BEFORE your document will expire.

  • Make sure your passport is valid for at least 6 months into the future. If it will expire soon, the International Students and Scholars Office will help you find out how to renew your passport with the assistance of your country's embassy or designated consular office in the U.S.

  • Notify the Office of the Registrar of any change in your address as soon as it has occurred. You may do this in person by visiting their office in 227 Gilchrist Hall, or by using the electronic form available at MyUniverse.

  • Notify the International Students and Scholars Office after each address change.

  • Check your UNI e-mail account regularly.

  • Remember that you have the right to be employed on-campus for up to 20 hours per week during academic semesters and full-time between semesters and over the summer vacation.

  • You must speak with the Immigration & Advising Coordinator if you are taking a course that requires an off-campus internship, or if an internship or similar work project is a required part of your degree program. Do this before the semester when this internship is scheduled to take place.


Important Terms and Documents


SEVIS: Student and Exchange Visitor Information System

U.S. Department of State: Operates Embassies and Consulates around the world.  Department of State issues the visas.

U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS): Responsible for controlling movement of people into the United States. Also responsible for monitoring people while in the U.S. and for enforcing federal law.

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), and U.S. Immigration & Customs Enforcement (ICE) are all subdivisions of the DHS.  Parts of the DHS were formerly known as the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS). The title “Immigration and Naturalization Service” still appears on some official documents and forms.

Form I-94: Arrival & Departure Record.  This is an official electronic record of each entry you make into the U.S.  I-94 information can be retrieved here.

Form I-20: Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant (F-1) Student Status for academic and Language Students. A Dept. of Homeland Security form.

Form DS-2019: Certificate of Eligibility for Exchange Visitor status (J-1). A Dept. of State form.

Visa: Issued by the Department of State, tells the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services that you have been approved by the State Department to seek entry to the U.S.



If you ever have questions about immigration issues, please contact International Students and Scholars Office using the following information:

Telephone: 319-273-6421


Office visit: Office of International Engagement, 113 Maucker Union