• F-1 Students

    It is your responsibility to maintain F-1 student status. You may review page 2 of your I-20 for details on how to do so. If you ever have questions you should contact the Global Engagement Center for clarity and/or to speak in person.

    International students should read through each section thoroughly.

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    There are three types of employment that F-1 students may apply for:

    • On campus employment for F-1 students is permitted for work on campus for up to 20 hours during school sessions, and up to 40 hours during school breaks. Work authorization is granted upon arrival after students complete the SEVIS registration appointment. Students are responsible for finding on campus jobs, and applying directly to the sponsoring department. To apply and search for on campus jobs, visit the Human Resources website. Please note: not all jobs are available for international students as they may be tied to federal financial aid.

    • Curricular Practical Training (CPT) is work authorization for paid or unpaid off-campus employment that is an integral part of the established curriculum. CPT is available during (not after) a course/program of study and must be authorized for a specific employer. 

    • Optional Practical Training (OPT) is temporary employment authorization that an F-1 visa student can request in order to gain practical experience in his/her field of study. 

    For additional information please refer to the Employment page, or watch this recorded session


    F-1 students who wish to reenter the United States after travelling abroad should:

    • Have their current I-20 endorsed for travel by a DSO prior to departing
    • Have been out of the United States for less than five months
    • Have a current passport valid for at least six months beyond the date of your reentry to the U.S.
    • Have a valid, current visa or have traveled to a contiguous country or adjacent island for less than thirty days
    • Have financial information showing proof of necessary funds to cover tuition and living expenses
    • Bring their most recent I-94, Departure Card to facilitate reentry, if reentering through a land port of entry (POE). If you are flying, the airline will collect your I-94 prior to departure and you will complete a new one upon reentry.

    For more information about domestic and international travel, please see the Travel page of our website.


    Transfer Out

    To transfer schools, you must first be admitted to that school, and you will need to complete all relevant paperwork from that institution along with the GEC transfer out form. Your “SEVIS release date” will be effective the date that you select to have your F-1 SEVIS record transferred from Hamline to the new institution.

    Please note: when selecting your release date, consider your on-campus job, CPT or OPT time. On and after your release date, you will no longer be able to participate in CPT, work on campus, and your OPT will terminate.

    Submit the following documents to the Global Engagement Center:

    • Transfer Out Request Form » 
    • Copy of acceptance letter from SEVIS — approved school
    • New school's transfer notification form (if applicable)
    • Transfer survey (see page 2) of the Transfer Out Form

    Leave of absence/Withdrawal

    A non-immigrant student may be re-admitted after a temporary absence of five months or less from the United States, if the student is otherwise admissible. You may be readmitted by presenting a valid foreign passport, a valid visa, and either a new Form I-20 A-B or a page 4 of the Form I-20 A-B (the I-20 ID Copy) properly endorsed by the foreign student advisor for re-entry if the information on the I-20 form is current.

    Download and print a Leave of Absence/Withdrawal form » 


    An F-1 student who is maintaining status and making normal progress toward completing educational objectives, but who is unable to complete the course of study prior to the program end date on the form I-20, is eligible for an extension of program if:

    • The student applies for the extension prior to the program end date listed on the I-20
    • The student has maintained lawful F-1 status
    • The delay is caused by compelling academic or medical reasons

    The following documents are required to apply for a program extension:

    Reduced Course Load

    As a general rule, immigration regulations require international students to register full time each semester. Only one online course per semester may count toward a student's full time enrollment.

    Students with an approved academic or medical reason may be eligible for a reduced course load. The academic department's approval is required on the Reduced Course Load form to ensure that the student is eligible and to ensure that the student has discussed the academic implications of the reduced course load. A full reduced course load (no enrollment) is allowed ONLY when a student has an approved medical reason; otherwise, the student must register for at least one credit per semester.


    Dependents (spouse or children) of international students, scholars and researchers may accompany you to the United States if you hold an F-1 visa by applying for a dependent (F-2 ) visa. We suggest that you request the addition of dependents to your immigration record when you first apply to the university.

    You may request additional dependents after you arrive; however, please be sure to plan time accordingly as they will require original immigration documents in order to apply for the dependent visa at a US embassy or consulate abroad.

    If the dependent is already in the United States with a different visa type, he or she will need to file a change of status application with USCIS. The GEC office can assist in this process.

    Download and print the Dependent Request form » 

    Employment and Study: F-2 dependents may not work or study while in the United States.


    All F-1 students (and their dependents living with them) are required to file tax forms each year in the U.S. — regardless of whether or not they earned income. Failure to do so could result in a violation of your immigration status. If you did earn money while working here, filing a tax form could mean a refund. The tax deadline is usually April 15 or close to this date (depending upon the year).

    Federal forms 1040NR-EZ and 8843 must be mailed to: Internal Revenue Service, Austin, TX 73301-012.

    State form M1 and a copy of your Federal forms 1040NR-EZ and 8843 must be mailed to: Minnesota Individual Income Tax St. Paul, MN 55145-0010