SEVIS (Student and Exchange Visitor Information System)
SEVIS tracks immigration information on students. You must make sure to maintain your F1 status. If you will be leaving the U.S. and re-entering, moving, or need to extend your study program or otherwise change your status while in the U.S. on a student F1 visa, make sure you know what is required of you.
- What is SEVIS?
SEVIS is an internet-based system that allows schools and the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (formerly the I.N.S.) to exchange data on the visa status of international students. Accurate and current information is transmitted electronically throughout an F-1 student's academic career in the United States. U.S. embassies and consulates also have access to SEVIS.
- How does SEVIS work?
After Portland Community College admits an international student, SEVIS is notified and the USCIS approves the college request to issue an I-20. PCC issues the new bar-coded I-20 form to the student. The student visits the U.S. consulate abroad, and the consulate confirms through SEVIS that the I-20 the student is carrying is a valid document. If everything is in order, the consulate issues the visa.
A USCIS officer at the airport reports to SEVIS the student's entry into the U.S. When the student arrives on campus, he/she reports to the Office of International Education (OIE), and the school confirms through SEVIS the student's enrollment. PCC continues to provide regular electronic reports to USCIS throughout the student's academic career. Finally, SEVIS records the student's departure from the United States.
Ten Things You Need To Know About SEVIS
- A student who drops below 12 credits without prior approval from a Designated School Official (DSO) will be out of status. Only one part-time approval is allowed at PCC.
- Only one Distance Learning/Online course may be counted toward the 12-credit requirement.
- You have only 15 days to leave the U.S. if you decide to withdraw from all your classes with prior approval from a DSO.
- You need medical documentation from a physician if you are sick, and not able to attend school full-time.
- Check in with a DSO before taking a vacation term.
- Do you need to file for reinstatement? You must not be out of status for more than 5 months at the time of filing.
- Transferring to another school? You must obtain a release from a DSO.
- You have moved!!! USCIS needs your new address within 10 days, and so do we.
- During your studies at PCC and while on practical training, you must report any changes to a DSO.
- You may be authorized for 12 months of practical training (OPT) at PCC, and become eligible for another 12 months of practical training when you move to a higher educational level.