My Colby-Sawyer Experience

“My education at Colby-Sawyer had a tremendous impact on how I presented myself in a professional setting.”
Colin Bellavance, Sport Management

175th Celebration

In 2012 the college celebrated 175 years as an institution of teaching and learning. Visit the 175th website for more information and to view photos of the events.

returning student visa process

Maintaining Legal Immigration Status

In order to maintain F-1 status once you arrive in the United States, you must keep all of the following documents updated and valid at all times in addition to pursuing a full course of study. Failure to comply with these regulations could result in costly fees or deportation.

Passport

This is a legal document issued by your country, and must be valid (unexpired) at all times. Your passport can be renewed through your embassy or consulate in the U.S.

I-20 Form

When the college sends you the I- 20 form (Certificate of Eligibility) after you have been accepted, be sure you have read and understood the entire form, front and back, and signed it. This form authorizes you to apply to the U.S. embassy in your home country for an F-1 (student) visa.

Individuals who are granted an F-1 Visa to study at Colby-Sawyer must report to International Student Services within 30 days of the start date of classes EACH SEMESTER. International students who fail to do so will be designated as "no shows" in the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS), which is the tracking system for international students used by the U.S. government, AND WILL BE AUTOMATICALLY TERMINATED in the system.

Make sure your I-20 is signed every 6 to 9 months by the international student advisor. You must present this document to U.S. customs each time you return from traveling outside the U.S. The I-20 form must never be allowed to expire (see #5 on the I-20 form for expiration date). Make sure you keep a copy of all your I-20's throughout your college years as you will need them for future applications, such as OPT (Optional Practical Training) or change of status.

F-1 Entry Visa

This is a stamp or a sticker placed in your passport, which allows you to enter the U.S. You cannot renew it from within the U.S., and unless you are planning on traveling outside the U.S., you don't need to.

If it has expired, and you are leaving the U.S and plan to return, you must apply for a new entry visa to the U.S at the U.S. embassy or consulate in your home country.

I-94 Card

This is the white card you complete before passing through U.S. immigration at your point of entry to the U.S. You must keep this card in your passport at all times.

It will be surrendered to airline officials when you travel outside the U.S., and then a new card will be given to you upon your return. The immigration officer, however, will write the old admissions number on the new card when you re-enter the U.S.

Full Course of Study

You must enroll in at least 12 credits each semester, unless you have been given special permission to reduce your course load. In that case, you must see the international student advisor.

Employment

Do not ever work illegally, on or off campus. If you are ever offered a job, check with your international student advisor before accepting. Working without proper authorization can result in deportation. Information on employment regulations for international students can be found at this link: http://www.colby-sawyer.edu/international/services/employment.html

Individuals who are granted an F-1 Visa to study at Colby-Sawyer must report to the college within 30 days of the start date of classes. International students who fail to do so will be designated as "no shows" in the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS).

For more information about the visa process, go to www.travel.state.gov.