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Current Students and Scholars

Maintenance of Status

Requirements to Carry Immigration Registration Document and Report Change of Address

  • Carry your immigration registration document - Nonimmigrants and lawful permanent residents must carry their "evidence of registration" document at all times. Usually, this is Form I-94 for nonimmigrants, or Form I-551 (green card) for lawful permanent residents. Print out Form I-94
  • Report address changes within 10 days - All aliens living in the United States for more than 30 days must report any change of address within 10 days of the address change.
    • USCIS has designated Form AR-11 to be used for this purpose. The USCIS website has the most current version of Form AR-11 and the mailing address for that form.
    • The change of address can also be filed online through the USCIS website; if you use the online change of address, do not file a paper Form AR-11.
    • In addition: Individuals in F and J status must:
      1. Scan a copy of the AR-11 to the OISS, so we can update your address in SEVIS.
      2. Update your address with Yeshiva University, through your online student account.

  • Report to the OISS within 10 days of start of school to complete the F-1 check-in procedure
  • Register full-time each semester*
    • Undergraduate students: 12 academic credits per term (minimum)
    • Graduate students: 8 to 12 credits per term; varies by degree program
  • Do not work in the U.S. without employment authorization (see employment information)
  • Within 10 days of the occurrence, report the following to the OISS:
    • Change of major or addition of second major or minor
    • Change of financial aid award package or financial support as listed on the I-20
    • Changes of local address
    • Official change of citizenship or name, in your passport
    • Approved leave of absence or withdrawal from school
    • Anticipated completion of your degree more than 21 days before the end date on your I-20 (completing your degree early)
    • Change of immigration status
  • Have your I-20 signed for travel at least once per year
  • Students authorized for post-completion Optional Practical Training (OPT):
    • Do not exceed 90 days of unemployment once authorization commences
    • Have your I-20 signed for travel every six months
  • *A reduced course load may be authorized for documented medical conditions and specific academic situations. Student who are considering dropping below full-time must speak with an advisor prior to dropping courses. OISS

Travel Information and Resources

International students and scholars are free to travel both domestically and internationally during their time at Yeshiva University. Prior to leaving the U.S. make sure that you documents are in order to avoid difficulty reentering. If you plan to travel outside of the U.S., please keep in mind that you will need to have certain documents with you in order to re-enter the United States.
U.S. Customs Travel FAQ

All F-1 students and J exchange visitors should carry the following documents with them when reentering the U.S.:

  • Passport valid for 6 months beyond the date you plan to enter the United States
  • Valid F-1 or J-1visa (Canadians do not a need visa) IMPORTANT: If you do not have a valid visa stamp in your passport consistent with your current immigration status, you will need to apply for a visa at a U.S. Consulate abroad.  Contact the U.S. Consulate/Embassy well in advance of your intended travel to see how long they are taking to schedule appointments.  You can find the websites for each of the Consulates here:
  • Signed I-20 (1 time per year) or DS-2019 (every 6 months)
  • Transcript showing that you are/have been studying full-time
  • Proof of funding (by law, customs can ask to see this)
  • SEVIS I-901 fee receipt (by law, customs can ask to see this) You can reprint your receipt online:
    • Students authorized for post-completion OPT and travelling after their I-20 end date should also bring: OPT approval notice and EAD.  Students on OPT must have their I-20 endorsed for travel every 6 months. REMEMBER TO REPORT OPT EMPLOYMENT WITHIN 90 DAYS OF YOUR OPT START DATE.
    • STEM OPT: Students who apply for STEM OPT should not leave the U.S. while the application is pending, unless your 12 month OPT period is still valid.
  • In case of an emergency, please carry YU's 24 hour emergency number 212.960.5200

Every time you enter the U.S.: Retrieve your I-94 number online at  The Form I-94 is a record of your U.S. arrival/departure. Check to make sure that your visa classification is correct and that the expiration date is correct.

Bumpy return? Normally students and exchange visitors are admitted to the U.S. for Duration of Status (D/S).  D/S means you may stay inside the U.S. to complete you program of study, provided that you are following all the F-1/J-1 rules and regulations.  Often, students who do not have all their documentation are admitted to the U.S. anyway, for 30 days.  If you receive a form I-515A upon return, it is urgent that you contact the OISS immediately upon return to convert it to D/S.  Failure to do so could result in a visa overstay and a violation of your F or J status.

Automatic Revalidation of Visa (ARV): Reentering the U.S. with a valid I-94 and an expired visa.

Under the automatic revalidation provision of immigration law, certain temporary visitors holding expired nonimmigrant visas who seek to return to the U.S. may be admitted at a U.S. port-of-entry by Customs and Border Protection (CBP), if they meet certain requirements, including, but not limited to the following:

  • Nonimmigrants who departed the United States for brief travel to Canada, Mexico, or an adjacent island (for F and J nonimmigrants) for thirty days or less;
  • Nonimmigrants with a valid (unexpired) admission stamp or paper Form I-94, Arrival/Departure Record, endorsed by DHS.
  • F-1 students with a Terminated SEVIS record are not eligible for ARV.

Government Travel Resources

Program Extensions

Students are expected to complete their degree by the end date on the I-20.  There are times when intervening medical or academic situations delay program completion. If you think that you will not be able to finish in time, speak with the an advisor at the OISS well in advance to see if you qualify for an I-20 program extension.  A program extension must be authorized before the end date on the I-20. Failure to complete or extend on time will result in program Termination.

F-1 and J-1 students are required by law to register and attend school full-time every term. Under certain circumstances, a Designated School Official (DSO) may authorize a reduced course load (RCL), permitting you to drop to part-time or even stop studying completely for a specific period of time. At Yeshiva University, the person to see about RCL authorization is the OISS Director. Below are the different kinds of RCL:

  1. Academic RCL: Academic difficulties are restricted to initial difficulties with English language or reading requirements, unfamiliarity with U.S. teaching methods, or improper course level placement. To maintain F-1 status, you must register at least half time and resume a full course of study the next required semester. A reduced course load based on academic difficulties may only be authorized once per academic level. If you have already been authorized for Academic RCL at your current program level, at Yeshiva University or another school, you are not eligible for a second authorization. [8CFR 214.2(f)(6)(iii)(A)]
  2. Medical RCL: If you are suffering from a temporary illness or medical condition, are unable to study full-time AND will remain inside the U.S., you may be able to register part-time or not at all, depending on your condition. A licensed medical doctor, doctor of osteopathy, or licensed clinical psychologist needs to provide a formal letter, on letter head, substantiating your condition and recommending a reduced course load for a specified period of time. Medical RCL extending beyond one semester must be reauthorized each term. A student may be authorized for Medical RCL on more than one occasion while pursuing a course of study, as long as they do not exceed a total of 12 months per academic level. [8CFR 214.2(f)(6)(iii)(B)] Students who are approved for a leave of absence and leave the U.S. to pursue medical treatment do not need medical RCL, but you do need to advise the ISA of your plans before leaving or dropping your courses.
  3. Final Semester: A Designated School Official (DSO) may authorize an RCL in your final semester, if fewer courses are needed to complete your program of study. Your academic advisor must confirm that you are in your final term and taking all remaining required courses to graduate. [8CFR 214.2(f)(6)(iii)(C)] To qualify for RCL, you must still be enrolled full-time. If you have already dropped below full time, you are not eligible. Yeshiva University is required to Terminate your SEVIS record and you will need to apply for Reinstatement to F-1 status once you are able to resume a full course load.

You can apply for a Reduced Course Load through the International Portal.

School Transfers and Change of Level

Students often transfer from one SEVIS approved school to another, inside the U.S. To start the process of transferring, provide the OISS with written confirmation of acceptance to another school and the school's SEVIS school code. Your SEVIS record must be transferred out or "Released" to the new school before the end of the 60 day grace period following completion of studies or OPT authorization.  You must be able to start school within 5 months of program completion or the next required semester, whichever is sooner. You cannot skip a required term at the Transfer-In school. The Transfer-In request is part of the I-20 application.  Transfer-Out request

A Change of Level is moving from one academic level to another, at the same school.  (ex: Bachelor to Master)  When this happens, a new I-20 is required. The new I-20 must be issued before the end of the 60 day grace period following completion of studies or OPT authorization. Please contact the OISS for assistance.

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