Walk-Up Counseling Hours International Student Advisors
If you have questions about visas or immigration, our advisors can help you.
They are available to meet you in person during walk-up counseling hours Monday-Thursday, from 1:00-3:00 p.m. or send an email to ImmigrationOfficials@ce.uci.edu to make an appointment.
Their office is in Building CE3 (#234 on the campus map).
Overview of Immigration Regulations
To maintain F-1 (student) status in the United States, you must fulfill the following requirements:
- Maintain full-time enrollment and make progress toward completion of your program
- Regularly attend class at all times and do not exceed maximum allowable absence hours
- Provide your California address within 10 days of your arrival into the U.S.
- Notify the International Programs office of any change of address within 10 days if you move to a new address in the U.S.
- Request a program extension BEFORE the expiration date of your I-20 if you need more time to complete your program
- Follow regulations for travel outside of the United States and keep your passport valid at all times for at least 6 months into the future
- Do NOT accept off-campus employment
- Notify an International Student Advisor of your intent to transfer to another school BEFORE the end of your current program
- Leave the United States or transfer to another school within 60 calendar days of completing your program
Understanding Your Visa Documents
- Your F-1 visa is used for entry into the U.S. only
- If your visa expires you do not have to leave the U.S.
- Once you enter the U.S. the CBP admission stamp in your passport and your I-20 are the documents that tell you how long you may remain in the U.S. All students should have a CBP admission stamp in their passport that says D/S. This means “Duration of Status”. As long as you maintain your status as a student, you are eligible to remain in the U.S.
- You may stay in the U.S. and study AS LONG AS YOU ARE A FULL-TIME STUDENT and have a valid I-20 from the school that you are attending. If you withdraw or are dismissed from UCI Division of Continuing Education before the end date on of your I-20, you must depart the U.S. without delay.
- If your F-1 visa is expired and you want to travel outside of the U.S., you must renew your visa at an embassy outside of the United States before you can re-enter the United States.
- Before you travel outside of the United States, please follow the directions listed on: http://www.uciesl.com/traveling-outside-of-the-us.html You must be in valid F-1 status and have a travel signature on your current I-20. The date of the travel signature must be less than one-year-old. You must ensure that you will not miss class during your travel time, and you must return to UCI Division of Continuing Education to continue yours studies immediately following your re-entry to the United States.
Continuing Studies in a Certificate Program
If you are interested in enrolling in a certificate program after the completion of your current ESL program, you will need to submit an application. For more information about our certificate program offerings and requirements please visit the Professional Programs office located in UCI Division of Continuing Education, Building CE3.
If you are unable to attend your program on a full time basis due to a temporary illness or medical condition, you may be authorized for a reduced course load for a period of time not to exceed a total of 12 months. You must provide a valid doctor’s note which recommends leave BEFORE you stop attending classes.
Off-campus employment is NOT allowed for students on F-1 visas. On-campus employment is allowed for students who are in valid F-1 status. On-campus employment opportunities are limited and must be part-time only (a maximum of 19 hours per week). Please contact an International Student Advisor for more information.
In order to maintain your F-1 status, you must follow all attendance and academic policies. Please check the rules for academic probation and dismissal at these sites:
You may be eligible for a one-quarter vacation period if you are in good academic standing and have attended three consecutive quarters at UCI Division of Continuing Education. You must request a vacation quarter before the end of the current quarter and meet with an International Student Advisor in order to be approved. You also must return to your studies at our school immediately after your vacation quarter. For more information visit http://eslstudents.ce.uci.edu/vacation-quarter.html.
Preparing to Leave the United States
Immigration regulations require you to leave the United States within 60 days of your program completion date. Students who do not complete their program due to dismissal or withdrawal do not receive the 60-day period and must leave the United States immediately.
Please contact an International Student Advisor if you have any questions. We are happy to help you. Enjoy your studies!