F-1 Students

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If you are traveling outside the United States, you will need the following documents in order to re-enter:

  • Valid passport
    If your passport has expired or is close to expiring, you should renew it before you travel. Passports should be valid for at least six months into the future. Contact your country’s embassy in the United States for information about renewing or extending your passport.
  • Valid F-1 visa
    If your F-1 visa has expired or if you do not have an F-1 visa, you must apply for one at a U.S. consulate abroad before you return. Before departing, please check the local consular office's website to find information on current processing times.
  • Valid I-20 document
    Your form I-20 must contain the signature of a Designated School of Official (DSO) in the travel authorization section (page 3). This signature cannot be more than 12 months old on the day of your expected return to the United States (no more than 6 months old if on F-1 OPT).
  • Documentary evidence of funding
    Students trying to re-enter the United States should be able to provide documents that verify the funding information as listed on form I-20. If your current funding sources do not match the funding recorded on your form, you will need a new one. Please contact our office to request an appointment with one of our Designated School of Officials (DSO).
  • Evidence of full-time enrollment
    You must be able to provide evidence that you have enrolled full time during the entirety of your career as an F-1 student. An unofficial transcript from UMMC is the best way to verify enrollment. Contact the Office of Students Records and Registrar if you have questions on how to obtain one.
  • EAD card and employment letter (for F-1s on post-completion OPT only)

Travel on OPT

There are a number of documents that you must have with you in order to re-enter the United States after your OPT has been approved.

  • A form I-20 signed by a Designated School of Officials (DSO) within the last six months
  • A valid F-1 visa
  • A valid passport
  • Your EAD card
  • A letter from employer confirming that you are or will be employed there under Optional Practical Training.