Report to the school in a timely manner

As an F-1 and J-1, you must report to the school at the start of each Spring and Fall semester. If you are not enrolled full time AND present at the school at the start of each Spring & Fall semester, your student visa status will end.

Be a full-time student

The primary purpose of your visit to the United States is education. Being a full time student (spring & fall semesters) is an important part of maintaining your student visa status. For undergraduate students, this means a total of 12 credits with at least 9 face to face credits in Spring and Fall semesters. For graduate students, this means a total of 9 credits with at least 6 face to face credits in Spring and Fall semesters. Do NOT drop a class without written permission from the Office of International Education & Services.

Still confused about online and blended courses? Please review the following link for detailed information on enrollment requirements: Detailed Enrollment Requirements for Students on a Student Visa 

Remain in good academic standing

It is important that you ensure you remain in good academic standing with the school. Students that are academically suspended from the school will not be able to enroll in future terms.  If you are unable to enroll in future terms due to academic suspension, you will fall out of status.  Also note: If you are eligible to receive any scholarships, it is important that you maintain the GPA required to continue to receive those scholarships.

Contact if you have questions or concerns about your scholarship.

Do Not Work Off-Campus

As an F-1 or J-1 student, you are permitted to work on campus for 20 hours per week during spring and fall semesters. You can work on campus up to 37.5 hours per week during winter break, spring break, fall break and summer semester.

You are NOT permitted to work off campus without prior authorization from the Office of International Education & Services OR the United States Citizenship & Immigration Services. Read complete details at

Report Address Changes

Department of Homeland Security requires all international students on student visa to update their school with their current address (AND update any changes to this address within 10 days of the change). You MUST have a local address on banner. Please follow the steps below to ensure that your address with the school is current:

  • Log on to the portal at:
  • Click the Student Tab
  • Click on “Click here to open My Southeast Self-Service”
  • Click on the link to access My Southeast Self-Service
  • Select PERSONAL INFORMATION at the top of the menu
  • Select Update Addresses and Phones at the bottom of the screen to make changes
  • Make changes if necessary and hit the Submit button.

Maintain All Required Documents


  • Do not allow your FORM I-20 /DS2019 to expire: You must NOT allow your Form I-20 (F-1) or DS2019 (J-1) to expire. Allowing your Form I-20/ Form DS 2019 to expire will automatically end your student visa status in the United States. If you need an extension, please contact our office at least two weeks prior to the program end date listed on your document.

  • Do not allow your passport to expire: You must NOT allow your passport to expire. A current passport is required for employment. You should contact your Embassy in the United States and start the process to renew your process.

  • Keep your I-94 safe: You must NOT lose i-94 arrival/departure document during your stay in the United States.

Be Insured! (Health Insurance)

The University requires ALL international students to purchase health insurance offered through Southeast Missouri State University. You may also want to look into buying renters insurance if you rent an apartment or a house. It is important that you engage in appropriate activities. If you are not sure, ask us! Always make an informed decision.

Get a travel signature if you plan to travel abroad

Please make sure you get your Form I-20 or Form DS2019 signed every time you travel outside the United States. Also ensure that all your immigration documents (Form I-20/DS2019, passport and visa) are valid for return.

What documents do you need to re-enter the US?

  • Unexpired and endorsed Form I-20 (for F-1 students) / Form DS 2019 (for J-1 students)
  • Unexpired passport valid at least 6 months into the future
  • Unexpired visa (F-1 visa if you have a Form I-20, J-1 visa if you have a Form DS 2019)

Note: You do not have to get a signature if you are traveling within the United States.