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Extension of Program

I’m an F1 student. I cannot finish my program by the end date on my I-20. What should I do?

  1. Click here for the form or go to Student Affairs (Fidel Center 2nd Floor) and apply for an extension early enough that SEVIS can be notified before the end date on your I-20. (Once that end date passes, no extension can be granted.)
  2. Make sure that you have continually maintained F1 status to this point. The two major issues are maintaining full-time enrollment and avoiding illegal employment.
  3. Provide documentation establishing that the delay in completing your program is due to compelling medical or academic reasons beyond your control. Documentation might include specific information from physicians, professors, etc.
  4. Provide a letter from your academic advisor outlining the remainder of your study program and the new expected completion date.
  5. Be prepared to discuss your financial support for the period of extension.
  6. If extension is granted, sign the new I-20.

I’m a J1 student in the same predicament. What should I do?
Follow the F1 steps exactly, but substitute “DS-2019” for “I-20.” If you are a degree-seeking student, there is no specific legal maximum time allotted for your program (although there may be an academic time limit). However, if you are a non-degree student, no extension beyond the lawful two-year maximum can be granted without specific approval from the Department of State.