F-1 Status Maintenance

Although ISS staff will do our best to assist students with maintaining your F-1 student status, ultimately, students are responsible for maintaining their own F-1 student status. Below are summary of basic rules and what actions students need to take to maintain F-1 student status:

  • When seeking admission into the U.S. using a newly issued PLU I-20 with a new SEVIS ID number, PLU’s name also must be printed on the F-1 student visa.
  • At initial entry to PLU or after being absent for more than 5 months, students must physically report to ISS staff to show passport, F-1 student visa, I-94 and I-20.
  • Students must report to DSO (ISS office staff) to have their SEVIS record registered in SEVIS at the beginning of each enrolled academic semester. Students must submit the SEVIS Record Confirmation Form to facilitate this process.
  • Maintain full time status during each academic semester. Full time is 12 credits for undergraduate students and 8 credits for graduate students.
    • Students may turn in Reduced Course Load Authorization Form if they are facing any of the following reasons to be considered part-time:
      • Illness or Medical Condition.
      • Initial Difficulties with English Language (first semester only)
      • Initial Difficulties with Reading Requirement (first semester only)
      • Unfamiliarity with American Teaching Methods (first semester only)
      • Improper Course Level Placement
      • Concurrent Enrollment
      • To Complete Course of Study in Current Term (graduating students only)
  • Report change of mailing & permanent address in Banner within 10 days. If residential address is different from mailing address, the residential address must be reported to ISS within 10 days. If international (foreign) address has changed, students must report to ISS within 10 days.
  • Submit Change of Major or Minor Form if declaring a major or minor different from what’s listed on I-20 (only primary major appears on I-20 but two majors and a minor can be recorded in SEVIS) .
  • Make normal academic progress in order to complete the course of study. In case of Academic Dismissal, SEVIS record will be terminated.
  • Never let your I-20 expire! Submit Program End Date Extension Form well before the expiration date.
  • Never let your passport expire!
  • Abide by Student Employment Policy when working on campus.
  • Do not engage in volunteering, internship or paid work off-campus without consulting with ISS staff in advance.
  • Obey Federal, State and Local Laws.
  • Abide by PLU Student Code of Conduct.
  • After completion of programs, students are allowed to remain in the U.S. for 60 days (grace period). Do not over-stay in the U.S.
  • In case of withdrawing from PLU, complete the Notification of Student Withdrawal Form.

Additional rules apply when students are engaged in Optional Practical Training (OPT). Attend OPT workshop offered at the beginning of each academic semester to learn more.

If you violate your status and/or run into a situation where you are questioned by Federal or Local Agents (for example: Police, Immigration Agents or FBI), you want to make sure you know what to do. To learn more, please visit Know Your Rights, a useful resource prepared by American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). 

As always, please let us know if you have any questions or concerns!