Student Immigration Definitions

Obtaining F-1 Student Status at Columbia

Important Information for Students Fully Funded
by Columbia University

Transfer of F-1 Supervision

Change of Status to F-1

Message for Canadian Students

Potential Delays in Visa Issuance


Student Tax Information

Maintaining F-1 Status

I-20 Recertification

Academic Certification for Travel

F-1 Travel Information

Govt Q & A for F-1 Travel

DHS Information on Arrival Problems

F-1 Extension of Stay (Current Program)

F-1 Extension of Stay to Begin New Program

F-1 Reinstatement

F-1 Work Opportunities

F-1 Practical Training (PT) Overview

F-1 Curricular Practical Training

F-1 Optional PT Before Degree Completion

F-1 Optional PT After Degree Completion

STEM 17-month OPT extension

F-1 Internship with an International Organization

F-1 Leave of Absence, Suspension or Withdrawal

Student Departure Information

F-1 Last Term Authorization

Inviting Relatives/Friends to Visit You

Address Change Form

Applying for a Social Security Number

Recertification of Form I-20

To return in F-1 status from a trip abroad, you must have a valid I-20 that has been recertified (signed) by the ISSO within the last year, except for those on post completion optional practical training. Those on post completion practical training returning in F-1 status from a trip outside the U.S. must have a valid I-20 that has been recertified within the last 6 months.

In order to have your I-20 recertified, you must be able to prove that you are in valid F-1 status and that you have sufficient funds to continue your studies at Columbia for at least one year. You must bring the following documents when you are requesting recertification of your I-20:

  • Your valid passport (and those of any dependents)
  • Your I-94 card (and those of any dependents) showing F-1 status
  • Your current I-20 (and those of any dependents)
  • Bank statement or other financial documents showing sufficient funds to cover tuition, fees and living expenses for one year for you and your dependents. If you are on practical training and employed, a letter stating your salary should be sufficient as long as it covers monthly expenses for you (and any dependents).

The ISSO will not recertify your I-20 if you do not submit the required documents. If all required documents are submitted, ISSO staff can normally recertify your I-20 at the time of your request.

Last reviewed: 21 February 2011 Last modified: 21 February 2011
Columbia University International Students and Scholars Office