Immigration regulations and processes are constantly changing. Make sure that you contact the Center for International Education regularly to find out about these changes.

Important Documents

Maintenance of F-1 Status

Travel outside the USA

Employment Information

Transferring In/Out

Important Documents

  • Passport: make sure your passport is valid for at least six months at all times. This is issued by your home country.
  • I-94 (white card in passport):  should say "D/S" on it. If it does not, please come to talk to us at International House. This document is issued at the Point of Entry to the U.S.A.
  • I-20: This is the document that allows you to study in the U.S.A. (at Maryville College) as an F-1 student. This document is issued by Maryville College, and you will need it for your appointment at the embassy, to enter the U.S.A. and to maintain your status in the U.S.A.
  • DS-2019: This is the document that allows you to study in the U.S.A. (at Maryville College) as a J-1 student. This document is issued by Maryville College, and you will need it for your appointment at the embassy, to enter the U.S.A. and to maintain your status in the U.S.A.
  • Entry visa (colorful stamp in passport):  This document allows you to enter the United States.  This is issued at a U.S. Embassy abroad.

Maintenance of F-1 Status

 Please note that the following is YOUR responsibility to maintain F-1 student status in the U.S.A.

 Report any change to the DSO (Kirsten Sheppard) within ten (10) days of the change:

  • Attend authorized school (Maryville College)
  • Carry a full course of study (minimum 12 credits each semester)
  • Make normal academic progress towards completion of program
  • Keep continuity in program of study (no absences for more than five months)
  • Refrain from unauthorized work
  • Get travel authorization prior to departure and return to U.S.A. in proper F-1 status (bring I-20 with copy of unofficial transcript to International House for travel signature)
  • Keep passport valid for at least six months into the future
  • Report any change of address to DSO within ten (10) days of the change
  • File timely requests for extension of stay, change of status, transfer, OPT and other benefits
  • Obey all state and federal laws

 IF YOU ARE ON OPT - You must also report to the DSO (Kirsten Sheppard):

  • The name of your supervisor, company, the contact information of the employer (including the address, phone number and e-mail)
  • Periods of unemployment
  • Give the DSO a copy of your Employment Authorization Document [EAD] (front and back)
  • File timely requests for extension of stay, change of status, transfer, OPT and other benefits
  • Refrain from unauthorized employment (in other words, employment that is unrelated to your field of study)
  • Keep passport valid for at least six months into the future
  • Get travel authorization prior to departure (valid for six months) and return to U.S.A. in proper F-1 status
  • Obey all state and federal laws

PLEASE SEE ATTACHED DOCUMENT ON MAINTAINING STATUS ON OPT

Travel Outside the USA

If you are planning to travel outside the U.S., please remember to do the following before you leave:

1. Determine if you will need a visa for countries other than your own.

  • Contact the nearest consulate or embassy of each country that you wish to visit.
  • This process may take several months, so inquire early.
  • Embassies in the U.S. can be found at: http://www.state.gov/s/cpr/rls/

2. Obtain a travel authorization signature from the Center for International Education

  • Bring your I-20 or DS-2019 to International House at least five days before your departure.
    **ISEP, IREX or World Learning Students will need to send their DS-2019 document to their sponsors for signatures.
  • If you have maintained your immigration status, made acceptable academic progress, are returning to Maryville College, or do not have an outstanding bill at the end of the semester, you can receive a travel authorization signature that should allow you to re-enter the U.S.A.
  • Travel authorizations are valid for one year, but we recommend that you have a travel authorization valid within the last six months.

3. Check your passport validity.

  • Your passport should be valid at least six months beyond the date you plan to re-enter the U.S.A.
  • If you need to renew your passport, plan to renew it well before you leave the USA or
  • before you return to the USA.
  • Also, check to see that you have your I-94 card (stapled to your passport or I-20).
    You will be required to surrender your I-94 if you leave North America.

4. Check your visa validity.

  • To re-enter the U.S. you must have a valid visa, unless you are traveling to Canada, Mexico or adjacent islands of the Caribbean for less than 30 days (excluding Cuba),whereby you can re-enter the U.S. through "automatic revalidation."
  • If your visa has expired or will expire while you are outside of the U.S. or if you have a single entry visa, you will need to obtain a new visa while you are outside of the U.S.A.
  • It is impossible to obtain a visa in the U.S. It is currently not advisable to apply for a U.S. visa in Canada or Mexico. If you choose to do so and your visa is DENIED, you will not be eligible to re-enter the U.S. as part of the "automatic extension of visa validity."
  • If the visa is expired or will expire prior to re-entry, then you will need to:
    • Provide DSO with proof of financial documentation for one year of study
    • Provide DSO with a copy of your transcript
    • Make an appointment with embassy in home country and bring all original documents for visa appointment

Required Documents for Re-Entry

When returning to the U.S.A. (absences less than five months) you should carry the following documents:

  • Valid Passport
  • Valid F-1 orJ-1 visa stamp, except for short trips to Canada, Mexico or adjacent islands
  • Valid I-20 or DS-2019 with travel authorization signature from the Center for International Education
  • Evidence of adequate finances
  • Business card of Center for International Education Staff
  • Copy of your transcript and current course schedule (optional but recommended)
  • Maryville College student ID card (optional but recommended)

Employment Information

These are the types of work permitted for students on F or J visas:

  • On-campus work. Limited to 20 hours/week during school. (Most offices at MC have lower limits). Any F-l and some J-l students may work on campus. See below for how to get jobs.
  • Work for economic hardship. For F-1 students, this can only be applied for after you have been in the US one full year.  For J-1 students, this can be applied for at any time with permission of the RO. For both F and J: there must be a valid, urgent and unforeseen change in circumstances before this approval will be granted. See the Director of International Education.
  • Training related to your study: F-l students who are seeking a degree at MC and who have been enrolled in the US for at least one year and who have junior standing may be eligible for a practicum or internship related to their major. For training before graduation (“curricular practical training”), the first step for doing any such work is to get the approval of your major advisor, then see the Director of International Education.  When you are near graduation, see the Director of International Education about the opportunity to work in the U.S. for up to one year in “optional practical training "  For OPT, Immigration approval is required; this takes three to four months.
  • For J-1 Students: speak with the Director of International Education to determine if you are eligible for work.

Transferring In/Out of Maryville College

For information on transferring IN to Maryville College, please visit the section of our website under International Admissions - Transfer Students.

For information on transferring OUT of Maryville College, click here.