F-1 students who are unable to complete all of their degree requirements by the program end date listed on the Form I-20 may request for a program extension. I-20 extension requests must be made at least one month before the expiration date on the Form I-20.
Students May Request an I-20 Extension for the Following Reasons:
- Change of major
- Extended time to complete a thesis or dissertation
- Change in research field
- Internship approval
- Medical reason
- Other circumstances
- You must have continually maintained legal status, to include keeping a valid, unexpired passport.
- Your extension request must be supported with a written letter from your academic department indicating the new expected degree completion date and the reason(s) for the extension request
- You must provide proof of adequate funding to cover tuition and living expenses for the duration of the extension. If you will receive departmental funding, provide a copy of the award letter with the stated amount.
- Extensions will be granted for a maximum of one year at a time. If additional time is needed, a second request may be submitted for the following year.
- Note: F-2 dependent extensions are granted at the same time as extensions for the primary F-1.
To Request an Extension, Please Follow the Steps Below:
1. Students requesting an extension must make sure that their academic department
sends a recommendation for continued studies. This can be in the form of an e-mail
from a professor or academic advisor, and should include a general estimate of the
additional time needed. The professor or academic advisor can print a letter, or can
simply e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
2. Students requesting an extension must show proof of funds for the future semester(s). Note that proof of funds from past semesters is not usually accepted.
3. Students must also verify that their passport is both currently valid and will be valid for a minimum of 6 months beyond the date of the extension request.
If there are any questions during this process, please contact the ISS Office at email@example.com or come to the ISS Office during our walk-in hours for questions.
Extension of I-20 requests are usually processed within 5 business days after the I-20 Extension Request is accepted, barring University closures or other unusual circumstances.