Current International Students

Student Handbook

Download the 2020-21 International Student Handbook.


The Student Exchange and Visitor System (SEVIS) is the database that allows SEVP to track international students and visitors and ensure that they are in the United States for the purpose they states in their application.

Note: Current students must come by the IPO every semester to update their SEVIS registration. Check IPO calendar for SEVIS registration dates.

F-1 Students’ Rights & Responsibilities

Immigration Acronyms You Should Know:

  • IPO
    International Programs Office (at Methodist University)
    Student and Exchange Visitor Information System — a tracking system for F-1 and J-1 students, exchange visitors, and their F-2 and J-2 dependents
  • DHS
    Department of Homeland Security — an office of the U.S. government that houses, among other entities, the three immigration-related departments (USCIS, ICE, and CBP)
    U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services —  an agency of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security that administers the country’s naturalization and immigration system
  • ICE
    Immigration and Customs Enforcement — oversees SEVIS and charged with enforcement of immigration-related infractions
  • CBP
    Customs and Border Protection — operates U.S. ports of entry
  • DOS
    Department of State — office of the U.S. government that oversees U.S. embassies and consulates abroad

Immigration Documents

The following documents are very important and must be valid at all times in order for you to maintain lawful F-1 status:

  • PASSPORT (should be valid for a minimum of 6 months into the future)
  • Form I-20 (Certificate of Eligibility for Non-Immigrant Student (F-1) Status)
  • Form I-94 Arrival/Departure Record. Please print your I-94 directly from CPB website; your class of admission is F-1.

Please keep your original documents in a safe place. We recommend that you make photocopies of these documents and store them in a location separate from the actual documents and also in electronic format. If any of these documents are damaged, lost or stolen, you must have them replaced as quickly as possible. Please keep in mind that the F-1 visa stamp in your passport does not need to be valid at all times but it must be valid when you reenter the United States after traveling outside the country. You should contact the IPO if you have any questions about the documents or if you need to have them replaced. Please bring all of these documents with you each time you visit the IPO.

More Information

Follow the links below for more information for current international students:

International Programs on Social Media

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