Center for Global Engagement
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Student Visa Status Requirements
Maintain Valid Documentation
As an F-1 and J-1 student you must keep your immigration documentation up to date at ALL TIMES!!! This means that you must have a valid I-20 (F-1) or DS-2019 (J-1), Passport, and I-94 at all times. Keeping these documents up-to-date is your responsibility. Failure to keep these documents up-to-date could result in loss of status.
If any of your immigration documentation is lost, please take steps to replace the missing item as soon as possible. If you lose your I-20, DS-2019 or I-94, please contact the current international student advisor in order to apply for a replacement. If you lose your passport please contact your nearest consulate or embassy in the United States to find out how you can receive a replacement.
NOTE: Your actual visa DOES NOT need to be valid WHILE IN THE UNITED STATES. Once in the United States your I-20 or DS-2019 becomes the documents that demonstrate that you are in status. A valid visa IS required if you leave the United States and want to come back.
Full Course of Study Requirement
All F-1 and J-1 international students are required to be enrolled full-time during the entire semester. At UNG, this requires enrollment in at least 12 credit hours. If an international student in F-1 or J-1 status falls below 12 credit hours, and they cannot return to the class, they will be terminated from status.
Online Classes: Increasingly, more and more classes are going completely online. If you are an F-1 or J-1 student you must be taking at least 9 credit hours of traditional classroom study to count as a full-time student. Any other classes taken above these 9 credit hours can be online.
There are some exceptions to the full course of study requirements, please go to page 25 in the international student handbook to learn more information and contact the international student advisor.
SEVIS Registration and Information Reporting Requirements
SEVIS registration occurs during the first 30 days of each semester that an F-1 or J-1 student is required to be enrolled during their program. Please make sure that you contact the international student advisor as soon as possible to correct any information that has changed like your address or a change of major if you have not done so already.
Name and address changes are required to be reported to the international advisor within 10 days of occurring. The address given must be the actual physical address in which you will be staying, not the address that your mail goes to. Failure to keep this information current could result in the loss of status.
Obeying Local, State, and Federal Law
The United States has three levels of laws: Local, State, and Federal. All laws must be obeyed while in the United States and ignorance of the law is not an excuse to be free of the consequences. Breaking any law can have an adverse effect on your schoolwork, immigration status, and/or life in general. If you are convicted of a misdemeanor it can mean up to a year in jail and subject to a fine. If you are convicted of a felony it can mean 1 year or more of jail time and a fine. If an international student is convicted of a felony, they will automatically lose their F-1 or J-1 student immigration status in most cases.