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Applying to Change Your Status in the USA

Change of Status to F1

Students must meet the International Student Advisor to discuss their case before any documents filed. 


You may apply to change your status if:

· You were lawfully admitted to the United States in an eligible nonimmigrant status

· Your nonimmigrant status remains valid

· You have not violated the conditions of your status 

 In this case, ISO will issue "Change of Status" I-20, and the student has to mail COS application packet to USCIS and wait until COS is approved.


Until you receive approval from USCIS you might be able to enroll for classes based on your current status :


Individuals on F-2, B1/B2 status may not engage in full-time study until COS to F1 status is approved.  

Individuals on H1B, H4 status are allowed to engage in full-time study. 

In other cases, you need to contact ISO.


During your Change of Status application pending with USCIS, it is not recommended to leave the U.S. 

Please note that IGU advisors are not immigration attorneys, we cannot advise you with your immigration status. We strongly recommend you to consult with legal counsel about your plans to apply to obtains F-1 status. 

Please mail your application using a trackable method and keep a record of your application's delivery.

How to apply for COS with IGU?

Travel and Re-enter the U.S. in F-1 Student Status

This option requires students to depart the U.S. and re-enter in F-1 student status. The student is required to:

  1. Depart the U.S. with an "Initial Attendance" I-20 issued from Graduate Admissions (GA) office

  2. Pay the SEVIS I-901 Fee

  3. Apply for F-1 visa at a U.S. embassy/consulate abroad (Canadian citizens are exempt from this requirement)

  4. Re-enter the U.S. in F-1 status

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