Renewing a Student Visa
Renewing your F-1 or J-1 Visa
If you are currently studying in the U.S. in F-1 or J-1 status and your visa is about to expire, please remember that you may remain legally in the United States with an expired visa because your I-94 card is marked D/S, which stands for Duration of Status. This means that you are eligible to remain in the U.S. until you either reach the end date on your I-20/DS-2019, or until the end of your academic program, whichever comes first. Your visa is simply an entry permit to get into the U.S.
However, if you are planning a trip outside of the United States and your visa is expired or about to expire, you will need to renew your F-1 or J-1 visa outside of the U.S. to be able to re-enter and resume your studies. It is not possible to renew your visa from within the U.S.
Steps for Renewing a Visa
- Schedule a visa appointment/interview
Checklist for Visa Appointment
- A completed visa application form (available at the Embassy's website)
- Proof of payment of visa application fees
- Current I-20 or DS-2019 with a valid travel signature
- All previously issued I-20's or DS-2019's
- A passport valid for at least 6 months or more into the future
- Updated financial support documentation
- Official transcripts*
- Proof of current enrollment, available at the Student Services desk on the first floor of the Mitchell Building*
- A letter verifying your full-time status from OIS.*
- Letter of support from your academic department*
- Proof of home country ties, including but not limited to: proof of property ownership, bank accounts, significant family in your home country, a job offer in your home country upon completion of your U.S. studies (you may or may not be asked about this, but it is always good to be prepared)
- For dependents applying for an F-2/J-2 visa: You should also bring your marriage certificate.
*Recommended but not required to take to your visa appointment