Maintaining J-1 Status

Report to the school

Your J-1 status is granted by the Customs and Border Protection agent at the Port of Entry (when you first enter the US), but in order to maintain that status, your first obligation is to report to the school you will attend. At Emory, you will complete that process via ISSS Link.

Attend the school you are authorized to attend

Although you may have received admission to a number of different schools and may have multiple forms DS-2019, you must attend the school that issued the form DS-2019 that you presented at the port of entry at the time you were granted your J-1 status (or follow the transfer process after reporting to the school, if you have changed your mind about which school you will attend after entering the U.S.).

Maintain required health insurance for yourself and your accompanying dependents

As a J-1 student sponsored by Emory University, you are subject to insurance requirements for all Emory students, which exceed those stipulated in federal regulations. Full-time enrolled J-1 students sponsored by exchange visitor programs other than Emory University must follow the insurance requirements of that sponsor as well as Emory's requirements.

Pursue a full course of study (or engage in authorized practical training)

You must enroll in a full course load each semester until you complete your exchange visitor program, except when you need less than a full course load to complete your program requirements during your final term of study. You are not required to register for the summer session unless it will be the first term of your program.

You may enroll less than full time only if you obtain approval from an ISSS advisor beforehand. See: reduced courseload authorization.

Upon completion of your program, you may remain in the U.S. beyond the 30-day grace period in J-1 status only if you have been authorized for and are engaged in Academic Training.

Make normal progress toward completing the objectives of your exchange program

Although it is understandable that you, like all students, may struggle with some of your classes, you must make continual and normal progress toward the completion of your educational objectives. Failure to do so could result in suspension from the program and termination of your non-immigrant status.

Apply for an extension of stay (if needed) in a timely manner

If you will not complete your exchange program by the end date on your current form DS-2019 for unexpected reasons, you must request an extension prior to that date. See: extending your program.

Obtain a new form DS-2019 for a change in academic program, level of studies, or funding

You must request a new form DS-2019 if there is any change in your major field of study, your academic program, the level of your studies, or the level of your funding.

Follow transfer procedures (if applicable)

 If you decide to leave Emory and continue your studies at another institution, you must complete specific steps to also transfer your immigration record. See: transfering from Emory.

Abide by J-1 grace period regulations

Following the completion of your exchange visitor program, you have a 30-day "grace period" within which you should either leave the U.S. or do one of the following:

Report a change in your address within 10 days

Ensure that your U.S. phone number(s) and local U.S. and permanent home country addresses are always accurate in Emory's records. You must update your address within 10 days of any change. See: updating your address.

Maintain a valid passport

Your passoprt must be valid for 6 months into the future at all times. Approximately 8 months before your passport expires, you should request a new passport from the consulate or embassy of your home country within the U.S. or while you are at home during a break between terms.

Do not engage in unauthorized employment

You are eligible to work on campus up to 20 hours per week during the academic year and full time during official university breaks and vacations, but you must be authorized for this work by an international student advisor prior to beginning employment. You must also apply for a Social Security number. You are not allowed to work off campus unless specifically authorized to do so. See: employment.

Depart the U.S. at the right time

By the end of the 30-day grace period following completion of your program of study or any authorized Academic Training, you must leave the U.S., unless you have applied for a change of status. If your SEVIS record and non-imigrant status are terminated early, the grace period does not apply, and you are expected to leave the U.S. immediately.