F-1 visas and regulations

Students with F-1 Visas at UMES

All new students must check in at the Office of Admissions and Recruitment with Visa/Passport and Initial Status I-20 during the first week of classes to activate student status!
Please be sure that I-20 information is accurate and kept current at all times.

F-1 Status

You are maintaining lawful status if you are making normal progress toward completing a course of study and complying with the immigration regulations outlined below.

Immigration Regulations

  • Pursue a “full course of study” at the school listed on your current Form I-20. A full course of study is 12 or more credits per semester for undergraduate students and 9 or more credits per semester for graduate students. Exceptions to the full-time requirement must be authorized in advance by your DSO (designated school official).
  • Complete your studies on or before the program completion date listed as your program end date on your I-20.
  • Keep your I-20 valid by following proper procedures for a program extension, change in educational level or field of study, and transfer of schools.
  • Remain in the U.S. for no longer than 60 days after completing your current program of study or after completing an authorized period of practical training.
  • Keep your passport valid at all times unless you are exempt from the passport requirement.
  • Accept no employment except that which is authorized in accordance with the immigration regulations.
  • Report any change of address to immigration within 10 days of the change.

If you fail to maintain status, you are ineligible for any of the benefits of F-1 status (for example, employment authorization). There are two ways to regain status: apply for reinstatement or depart the U.S. and seek a new admission to the U.S. in F-1 status.

Guidance for Online Filing – Form I- 765 (OTP).

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