Disclaimer: The information and resources listed on this page should not be taken as legal advice. If you have further questions after visiting United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)’ website, you may want to contact a licensed, legal professional knowledgeable in immigration law.
Enrollment Requirements for Fall 2020, F-1/J-1 Students
If you are a current student who is outside the U.S. and will not return to Valparaiso:
- Your SEVIS record will remain active as long as you enroll in a full course of study.
- If you do not plan to enroll in a full course of study online (12 credits for undergrad, 9 for grad students), you must contact an International Programs staff member to discuss your options.
If you are a current or new student outside the U.S. and can return or come to Valparaiso:
- You will be required to self-quarantine for 14 days before returning to campus.
- There are no in-person enrollment requirements for current/continuing students. You must maintain a full course of study (12 for undergraduate and 9 for graduate students). If this is your last semester and you need fewer credits to reach graudation requirements, you can seek an exception to the full-time credit requirement. You must file the reduced course load request on iValpo.
- For new F-1 students coming from overseas, you will need to enroll in at least one class that has an in-person component.
- For new J-1 students from overseas – you will NOT be allowed to come and start your new program.
- U.S. government’s guidance on students outside the U.S. who have a change of level I-20 for new degree program is still unclear. We will post the updates as soon as we hear of them.
If you are already inside the U.S. as a current student:
- There are no in-person enrollment requirements for current students during Fall 2020. You must maintain a full course of study (12 for undergraduate and 9 for graduate students). If this is your last semester and you need fewer credits to reach graudation requirements, you can seek an exception to the full-time credit requirement. You must file the reduced course load request on iValpo.
July 24, 2020
Last week we reported that the U.S. government has agreed to cancel the policy guidance released July 6-7, 2020 regarding online classes for F-1 students. Government guidance will return to the previous policy guidance issued on March 9 and 13, respectively. This March guidance was created to help schools during the Spring 2020 semester due to the pandemic in the U.S., and it assumed at that time that all course delivery was online. Therefore, since many schools (including Valpo) are now using hybrid (in-person & online) class methods, there are currently major gaps in the guidance with regard to how it should be applied to the Fall 2020 semester. We have been waiting for further clarification on these gaps. Unfortunately, as of today, no update has been issued.
Based on this situation and the spirit of the regular F-1 regulations, we encourage students to make every effort to take at least one course in Fall 2020 that has an in-person component. However, we understand this may not be possible due to limited in-person class availability. If hybrid or in-person courses are not available to F-1 international students, or if there is a concern of health, safety, and well being, then students may take a full online course load.
Also, please know that if the University moves to online instructions mid semester like we did in March, students will be able to continue to stay in the U.S. to complete their classes online. In that case, you will not be asked to leave the U.S. and you will continue to have a valid F-1 student visa status.
July 15, 2020
We are pleased to report that the U.S. government has agreed to rescind the policy directive and FAQs released July 6-7, 2020, regarding Fall 2020 international enrollment in U.S. institutions of higher education.
Click here for the latest updates on the university’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic and plan for reopening in August 2020 for the Fall semester.
February 4, 2020
Effective February 21, 2020, the new travel ban (Travel Ban 4.0) will expand visa and entry restrictions on travelers from six additional countries: Eritrea, Kyrgyzstan, Myanmar, Nigeria, Sudan, and Tanzania. However, it will not impact acquisition of nonimmigrant visas such like F, J, and H and it will not impact admission to the U.S. under those visa categories. Travel Ban 3.0 continues in effect on certain citizens of Iran, Libya, North Korea, Syria, Venezuela, Yemen, and Somalia.
August 12, 2019
USCIS announces a final rule that clearly defines long-standing public charge inadmissibility law to better ensure that foreign nationals seeking to enter and remain in the U.S. are self-sufficient and rely on their own resources of family members, sponsors, and private organizations rather than on public resources.
July 24, 2019
SEVP has begun conducting on-site inspections of F-1 STEM OPT employment. The site visit will verify employer compliance with STEM OPT regulations and with Form I-983 training plans. Companies with F-1 students on STEM OPT should be prepared for a potential site visit.
May 28, 2019
- The SEVIS fees which all F-1 & J-1 student & scholars must pay upon receiving a new I-20/DS-2019 record will go up on June 24, 2019. For F-1 students with an I-20, the fee will increase from $200 to $350, and for J-1 students or scholars, from $180 to $220.
- See this link for the official update from the Department of Homeland Security.