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F-1 international students have requirements to keep your immigration status valid. It is critical to be aware of the requirements, because failure to comply can result in your F-1 SEVIS status being terminated.

OIA Team are Designated School Officials (DSOs), and we are here to help international students understand and comply with legal status requirements. We are available to answer any questions you have about how your personal life situation may interact with your F-1 status. 

However, as DSOs, we are required to report to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) with termination of the F-1 SEVIS record. Our goal is to avoid this as much as possible, but it involves your individual compliance and attention. Please reach out to us if you have any doubts!


1) Attend OIA Pre-Arrival Mandatory Info Session, in which we offer you an interactive look at the key things you need to know during your studies. We offer this session multiple times on Zoom before your first semester starts.

2) Complete OIA Arrival Check-in, after your arrival to the U.S. in F-1 status and before your first semester begins.

3) Follow Full-Time Enrollment rules every Fall and Spring semester until your final semester. If you have a valid reason to be less than full-time enrolled, apply for Full-Time Exception/Equivalency (FTE) before the semester begins.

4) Maintain good academic standing, which includes following Academic Integrity policy and a grade point average (GPA) of at least 2.0 for Undergraduate and 3.0 for Graduate students.

5) Educate yourself about F-1 student Employment Options. Do not engage in unauthorized employment, which includes unpaid services. 

6) Update your current U.S. residential address and permanent address abroad as needed in your Pratt student record. The F-1 regulations state that OIA must report address changes in your SEVIS record and you are required to update your address within ten days of any change.

7) Keep your passport valid six months into the future at all times. If you need to renew your passport during the time you are in the U.S., you should contact your home country’s local embassy or consulate here in the U.S.

8) Understand international travel requirements. Request an I-20 travel signature as needed and renew your F-1 entry visa or passport as needed for entry to the U.S. 

9) Note that your F-1 entry visa is not a requirement for maintaining valid F-1 status. It can expire while you are inside the U.S. and you do not need to renew it until you decide to travel. The  important documents for status maintenance are your SEVIS I-20 record, I-94 record, and passport.

10) Know your I-20 expiration date (program end date on page 1). If your academic progress will be delayed beyond this date, you should request I-20 Extension in a timely manner. 

11) In the final semester of your program requirements, apply for OPT in a timely and accurate manner if you are interested in pursuing post-completion work authorization.

12) Abide by local, state and federal laws, including but not limited to alcohol, marijuana, graffiti, sexual assault, and domestic violence laws. In the U.S. legal system, ignorance of the law is not a valid defense. If you are arrested, or feel like you are in trouble otherwise, do not be afraid to reach out to the OIA Director.

13) Abide by Pratt policies. For example, it is legal to smoke/vape in NYC in general, but not on-campus. It is also not allowed to have any sort of weapon on campus.

14) Understand how to get your questions answered by experienced OIA DSOs. All immigration requests/applications are processed through your TDS Student Portal.