Enter the US Using a Different School's I-20

To lessen any potential problems upon arrival in the United States, you are encouraged to follow the guidelines below:

  • The U.S. Department of Homeland Security will normally expect new students to enter using an I-20 with a school name that matches the school listed on the visa. (note: This is not expected for continuing students who have been inside the U.S. for multiple semesters, because it is normal for students to sometimes change schools.)
  • The school listed on your I-20 must release your SEVIS record online to The University of Memphis. This is true even if you have two I-20s, one from The U of M and one from the school listed on your visa page. Notice the SEVIS id number on each I-20, located at the top of the cover page. That SEVIS number must stay consistent as you shift from the school listed on your visa to The University of Memphis.
  • The school listed on your I-20 may have a policy that requires you to attend classes there before they will release your record. If you are told that you must attend the school listed on your visa prior to their release of your SEVIS record, please let our office know as soon as possible TheWorld@memphis.edu. Feel free to make a group e-mail, including both schools' international offices in your communications.
  • The University of Memphis can issue a new I-20 under the following circumstances: 1. Official, full admission to a degree program has been issued for the new semester. 2. Updated financial documentation has been turned in to our office for I-20 purposes, and 3. The previous school has released the SEVIS record in time for the student to register and begin studies during the regular start of the term.