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F-1 Students End of the Semester Immigration Reminders

Important End of Semester Immigration Reminders

We hope everyone has had a successful fall semester!  Please carefully read the following announcements.  In an effort to limit the spread of COVID-19, The CGE front desk will be closing on November 26th, and will tentatively re-open in January.  We will announce specific re-opening date at a later time.  Students must pick up their documents by Wednesday, November 25th or arrange for them to be sent to them by regular U.S. mail or e-Ship global.

Below are some important immigration reminders for F-1 students.  Note that each situation is unique and the information below is general.  If you have any questions or concerns about your particular situation, international student advisors are available to meet with you during virtual advising hours Monday through Friday from 1-4 pm.

If you are graduating…


Program Completion Date and Grace Period

If you are a graduating F-1 student, your official program completion date for the Fall semester is December 12, 2020.  This is the completion date even if you are meeting a second fall thesis/dissertation deadline.  You must end all on-campus employment by December 12, 2020.

Your 60-day grace period begins on December 12, 2020.  If you have applied for Optional Practical Training (OPT), your program completion date may even be sooner (check your OPT I-20).


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, to a different immigration status or file for OPT, you must leave the U.S. by the end of your grace period.

You may travel inside the U.S. during your grace period but you may not leave the country and return in F-1 status. OPT and transfer situations are exceptions and we discuss those individually during the OPT or transfer process. Please contact an international student advisor if you have questions.

Departure Form

Students who will graduate, transfer or withdraw from the University should fill out the Departure Form.  Your Net ID and password is required to log in.


If you are returning to UTK in the Spring Semester…

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.


If you are a continuing student and plan to travel abroad this winter break, please review our International Student Travel Tips. ISSS does not recommend non-essential travel at this time. If travel is essential, please submit a travel authorization request via the iVols portal before you depart (at least 2 weeks in advance).  If you plan to travel inside the U.S., please be sure to take your passport and current I-20 with you.

Electronic I-94

If you are traveling abroad, ISSS 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: