International Student Office (ISO)
Completion of Program, New School Attendance and Transfer completion

Upon completion of a degree program, students normally have a 60 day grace period to leave the United States.

Students who have applied for Optional Practical Training within the government specified time limit are eligible to remain in the U.S. while the OPT application is pending, and are eligible to remain in the U.S. while employed using the OPT card, if they are maintaining government-required OPT compliance.

Students who are not on Optional Practical Training may remain in the U.S. for up to 5 months maximum, only when holding a new I-20 for transfer to a new U.S. school or a new I-20 for transfer into a new degree program. The 5 month period begins on the completion date of the previous degree program and is only valid if the student is holding an I-20 for the new program.

It is vitally important to remember that a new I-20 must be produced while the student is still in status.  If a student falls out of status before obtaining the I-20 for the new degree program, further measures will be required to return the student to valid F-1 status, if possible.

Students who are on Optional Practical Training are encouraged to check with their International Students Advisor prior to requesting a new I-20 to begin a new program.  Obtaining an I-20 for a new degree program will prematurely cancel the OPT. 

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Last Updated: 1/23/12