We hope that your spring semester is going as well as it can despite the current situation. Below are some important immigration reminders for F-1 students currently outside in the U.S. Note that each situation is unique and the information below is general. If you have any questions or concerns about your particular situation, CGE advisors are available to speak with you during Virtual Walk-In hours Monday through Friday from 1-4 pm, U.S. Eastern Time.
Program Completion Date and Grace Period
If you are a graduating F-1 student, your official program completion date for the Spring semester is May 9, 2020. This is the completion date even if you are meeting a second Spring thesis/dissertation deadline. You must end all on-campus employment by May 9, 2020 or I-20 program end date, which ever date is sooner.
Students inside the U.S. have a 60-day grace period beginning May 10. If you are outside the U.S. you will not be able to reenter the U.S. in F-1 status after May 9th.
On April 16th, Chancellor Plowman shared details on the current plan for graduation ceremonies, which you can view here:https://youtu.be/G85RyJpWK7Q
The 60-day grace period is intended for you to prepare to leave the U.S. Unless you transfer to a different university or program, apply to change to a different immigration status or file for OPT, you must leave the U.S. by the end of your grace period.
Please check with a CGE advisor to understand how to navigate the transfer process. Normally, a student should submit a Transfer Out request form via the iVols portal. Be sure to upload a copy of your official admission letter from your new school. Once the Transfer Out request and admission letter have been received a CGE advisor is able to review your request and if warranted transfer your SEVIS record to the new school.
Students Returning to UTK in Fall
At the present time, summer courses are only offered online. We do not yet know how fall courses will be delivered. Once a decision is made, detailed information will be shared with all students, including how immigration regulations may impact your enrollment and travel to the U.S. Keep in mind that in many circumstances, including travel restrictions change quickly. Students may face unexpected travel restrictions that affect their return to the US.
If you are traveling abroad, CGE strongly recommends that you print out a copy of your electronic I-94 upon your return. Review your I-94 to verify that the information is correct. You can check your I-94 here: https://i94.cbp.dhs.gov/I94/#
Read more about travel here:
Change of Address
If you are moving/have moved inside the U.S., or if your permanent (home country) address has changed, please make sure you submit your change of address to CGE through the iVols portal so that your SEVIS record is updated. The online form can be accessed through iVols.
You should also update your address on file with the University of Tennessee through MyUTK.