The Office of International Education and Services consists of the following units:

  • International Admissions
  • International Student and Scholar Services
    • New student airport transportation
    • New International Student Orientation
    • Legal status maintenance for all students and scholars here on an F or J visa and their dependents
    • Cultural Advising
    • Miscellaneous non-academic advising
  • Study Abroad
  • Intensive English Programs

I-20 Extensions

F-1 students are issued an I-20 for the estimated amount of time needed to complete their program. For example, undergraduate students are issued an I-20 for 4 years. It is very common for a student to need additional time to complete their degree requirements. An F-1 student may be able to extend the program end date on their I-20 if all of the following conditions are met:

  1. They contact OIES to request the extension prior to the original program end date
  2. A DSO updates the SEVIS record to reflect the extension before the program completion date
  3. They have continually maintained status 
  4. The DSO can certify that the delay in completion is "caused by compelling academic or medical reasons, such as changes of major or research topics, unexpected research problems, or documented illnesses"

Delays caused by academic probation or suspension are not acceptable reasons for program extension.

It is the student's responsibility to request an extension before the program end date. They must apply early enough to allow the DSO adequate time to approve the extension and update SEVIS, to complete the extension before the current program end date.

These are the instructions given to a student to get their I-20 program end date extended:

  1. Contact your academic advisor and ask them to email with the following information:
    • The new expected date of completion of your program
    • A description of the compelling valid academic reasons why your program could not be completed within the allotted time
  2. When you receive an email stating that it is ready, pick up your updated I-20 from the front desk of the International Center.


Students with a scholarship from the Ministry of Higher Education, Saudi Arabia Cultural Mission (SACM) need documentation to maintain their scholarship. Some of this documentation is provided by Office of International Education and Services and some is provided by the Office of the Registrar. We do not know of anything that SACM requires directly from the faculty or advisors.


Off campus internships require approval for Curricular Practical Training (CPT). CPT is work training that is an integral part of an established curriculum, this includes: “alternate work/study, internship, cooperative education, or any other type of required internship or practicum which is offered by sponsoring employers through cooperative agreements with the school.” CPT is available only prior to the completion of a degree program and the student must have a job offer for CPT at the time of application. CPT employment may not delay completion of the academic program.

Advisor Letter Template

Request a Presentation

The Office of International Education and Services offers presentations of various topics related to international recruitment, admissions, legal status maintenance, cultural awareness, communication, etc. The presentations can be customized for the content you are most interested in.

OIES Presentation Request

1025 N. Sprigg
Cape Girardeau, MO 63701
Mailing Address
One University Plaza, MS 2000
Cape Girardeau, MO 63701