Maintain Your Student Status

Always remain enrolled as a full-time student during the academic year. Please check with your academic department to verify what is considered full-time for your program of study. Generally speaking, 12 credit courses per semester is required for undergraduate students and 9 credit hour each semester for graduate students.  Summer semester is considered optional. You may choose to take any amount of classes or just simply take a break from study.

  1. Always keep your Form I-20 or Form DS-2019 current. If you plan to continue studying in the US beyond the date in item #5 of your Form I-20 (F-1 students) or in item #3 of your DS-2019 (J-1 students), you must apply to OISSS for a “program extension,” using Form OISSS-120.  Note: You remain in student status 60 days beyond the day you complete your program if you are an F-1 student; 30 days if you are a J-1 student.
  2. If you are transferring into TAMUK from another school, ask OISSS to complete the transfer procedures for you using form OISSS-100. It is your responsibility to notify your previous school of your intent to study at TAMUK. The transfer of your immigration status to TAMUK must be completed by the 12th class day. If you plan to transfer out to another school, make sure you notify OISSS of your intention so we may begin the transfer procedure using form OISSS-101.  
  3. Complete the level transfer/field of study change procedures at OISSS if you change from one educational level to another (e.g., MS to PhD), or from one major to another (e.g., Business to Biology) as soon as this change has been approved by your college.  
  4. Never work off-campus without authorization from OISSS and/or the U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS).  
  5. Limit employment, both on-campus and off-campus, to a total of 20 hours per week while school is in session unless otherwise authorized by OISSS and/or USCIS. As an F-1 student, you are allowed to work fulltime when school is not in session.
  6. Have a valid passport at all times. OISSS suggests that if your passport will expire in six (6) months that you contact your nearest consulate or embassy to inquire about renewal procedures.  
  7. OISSS and the USCIS must have your current residential address at all times. You must report any change in residential address to OISSS within 10 days of moving. (Residential Address is the actual physical address of where you live in the US. A departmental address or P.O. Box is not acceptable.) You may notify OISSS of your new address by sending the information by submitting the Form OISSS-10, Address or Name Change Report.  You can submit the form in person, via e-mail or fax.   Students subject to Special Registration will also need to complete a Form AR-11 SR and return it to the US Department of Homeland Security.  

If you are unable to maintain your status, resulting in its termination, you will be required to apply for reinstatement.

Individuals holding a status other than F-1 or J-1 may wish to meet with an international student advisor for information on maintaining your legal status. Please note, however, there may be an immigration status for which we cannot provide information based on certain circumstances.