Frequently Asked Questions for International Students

Can I take classes at another college or university, but stay enrolled at CF?
Yes. If you want to take a class that CF does not offer at another SEVIS-certified college or university, you can take the classes as a "transient" student. This would allow you to stay enrolled in classes at CF and take a class at another school without having to transfer to the other school. You can count the transient class towards your 12 credit minimum during the Fall and Spring semester, however at least 50% of your credits must be taken on-campus at CF. For more information, see your Academic Advisor.

Are hybrid classes considered "on campus" or "online" classes?
Hybrid courses that have mandatory on campus meetings are considered "on campus" classes.

I have finished all of my General Education courses and have enough electives to finish my Associate in Arts degree, but I still need to take additional classes as a requirement to transfer to a University. Can I graduate and then stay and take more classes?
No. You should only apply to graduate when you are in your last semester of classes for your degree. If you have additional transfer requirements left to complete before you are eligible to transfer and begin a Bachelor degree, you should complete those classes before graduating. Once you graduate, you will be in your 60 day grace period.

To avoid this, you should see your academic advisor in order to establish an academic plan to take your required transfer classes using available Elective credits and not leave requirements until your final semester.

I’ve graduated. What is my grace period?
Once you graduate with your AA degree, you will then be in a 60 day grace period. You will need to transfer to a new school, return to your home country, or begin a new degree program before your grace period is over.

How do I apply for graduation?
You must apply for graduation by the deadline by logging into your MyCF portal, clicking on the Graduation tab. The deadline for Fall graduation is September 25, 2015.

I’m in my last semester. Can I take less than 12 credit hours?
Yes. If you are in your final semester of your degree program, you can be authorized for a Reduced Course Load of less than 12 credits hours. You must still take classes on-campus, however you only need to register for the classes that are required to graduate. You can only have a Reduced Course Load once and it must be your last semester. Afterwards, you must transfer, return home, or begin a new degree program. See ISS to be approved for a Reduced Course Load.

I have graduated with my AA degree. Can I do a second degree at CF?
Yes. If you have completed an AA degree and are interested in completing another degree program at CF you may do so if you meet the eligibility requirements. You may be interested in enrolling in the Associate in Science or Bachelor degree programs. However, you cannot do a second AA degree. Some AS and Bachelor degree programs are Limited Access, meaning that you must meet admissions criteria to enroll and apply before the application deadlines.

I want to enroll in a Bachelor program, but I can’t start classes for 8 months. Can I stay at CF until classes start?
No. If you want to begin another degree program, you must begin classes at the next start date. You may take a summer break during the Summer semester, but you must be in classes during the Fall and Spring semester. If you are not eligible to enroll in the next semester that classes begin, you must make arrangements to return to your home country and then you can return to school 30 days before classes begin. For example, if you graduate in December, and your program doesn’t begin until August, you cannot stay inside the US waiting for classes to start.

To avoid this, apply for Limited Access programs early and apply for a back-up program as a second option. If you are not admitted to a program for the next semester, you will need to consider starting a different degree or returning home.

What happens if my F-1 visa expires?
You can stay in the United States on an expired F-1 visa as long as you maintain your student status. However, if you are returning home you must have a valid visa to return to the United States. Before leaving, check that you have all the documentation you need for your visa application and allow sufficient time for processing a new visa, such as a recently signed I-20 and evidence of financial support. It is strongly recommended that you apply for a visa in your home country.

Can I renew my student visa while in the United States?
No. You must apply at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate.

Can I exit and re-enter the U.S. during my 60-day grace period after finishing my degree program or OPT?
No. The purpose of your grace period is to allow you time to transfer schools, begin a new degree program, or make arrangements to exit the United States.

I am going home for a vacation during winter break. What do I need to do?
Before you leave, bring your I-20 to ISS to get an updated signature from your DSO. Check to make sure your F-1 visa and passport are valid before leaving. If either document will expire, you must renew before you will be allowed to return. Your passport must have a least 6 months of validity to enter the U.S.

Can F-2 visa holders enroll in classes?
Yes. People with F-2 visas can enroll in classes up to 11 credit hours each semester.

How do I transfer to another U.S. College or University?
If you want to transfer to another SEVIS-certified College or University in the United States, you must first contact the school and find information on the admissions process for transfer students. If you are completing your Associates degree at CF, you will want to click on “Transfer Applicant”. To see a list of SEVIS certified schools, visit http://studyinthestates.dhs.gov/school-search 

Can I apply to multiple schools?
Yes. You can complete transfer applications to as many schools as you want. 

Can I be accepted to multiple schools?
Yes. If you apply to multiple schools, there is a possibility that you will receive acceptance offers from multiple schools. 

Can I transfer my SEVIS record to multiple schools?
No. You can only choose one school to transfer your SEVIS record to. You must let CF ISS know when you have made your final decision and authorize CF to transfer your SEVIS record. 

I was accepted to the transfer school. What do I do now?
If you received multiple offers of acceptance, you will need to make a decision about which school you want to attend. Once you have made a decision, submit a copy of the acceptance letter to CF. Your SEVIS record will not be transferred until ISS has proof of your acceptance. You will also want to let your new school know whether you will be traveling outside of the United States after attending CF but before attending the new school. You will need a new Form I-20 from the new school before you re-enter the U.S. 

I was accepted to multiple schools. How long do I have to make a decision?
It depends on the schools you were accepted to. Most universities will require that you pay a nonrefundable tuition deposit, also called a “seat deposit”. If you do not pay the tuition deposit by the school’s deadline, your seat may be given to someone else. If you receive one acceptance offer, but are waiting for a decision from a different school, be aware of the deadline to pay the tuition deposit to the first school. 

The school is requiring I send a Transfer Form. How do I do that?
First you must complete the "Student Information" section of the form and sign your completed form. Then submit your form to ISS Office to have the second section complete by your Designated School Official (DSO).

UCF Transfer Form
UF Transfer Form – Emailed to accepted students
USF Transfer Form - Log into online account to complete
FSU Transfer Form - Request information for CF International Students office

The school is requiring a bank statement. How do I do that?
The school will usually have a form or procedure for how they want you to show proof of funds, or bank statements. They may want you to send originals, or upload a pdf copy. The bank statements must be recent, so the documents you turned into CF will likely be too old to use again.

What documents do I send to the school first?
It depends on the school, but usually you should start with the application for admissions and send your transcripts. Some universities will want to review your application and transcripts first and make a decision about admissions. Usually, the school will then request your other immigration documents after you are admitted. Check with the school to see how they want the process to work.

The school is requiring I send my CF transcripts. How do I do that?
Go to (https://www.credentials-inc.com/tplus/?ALUMTRO001471?ALUMTRO001471) and click “Start My Order”. If you do not have a Social Security Number, leave that box blank and just fill in your CF Student ID. You can request the transcripts be sent immediately, or held for grades from the current semester. Some universities may ask that you send two transcripts, one at the time you apply, and a second one after the semester is over. 

The school is requiring I send copies of my passport, I-20, and F-1 visa. How do I do that?
You should have the originals of all of these documents in your possession. Make a clear, legible photocopy and send it to the school in the way they request. Some school will ask you to fax them, or upload a copy.

How do I get an Apostille Certification?
You must first request your official college transcripts or a notarized enrollment verification letter (include the request for notarization under "specific instructions"). Once you receive the document, you must send the original document to Florida's Department of State Office to receive an Apostille Certification. Click for the address and instructions.

Helpful Links

I-901 SEVIS Fee FAQs
Travel and Re-entry FAQs
Study in the States FAQs
EducationUSA FAQs
I-94 Find an Answer

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