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CHANGE OF STATUS TO F-1

To request a change of status to F-1 while inside the US, you may choose to schedule an appointment with the International Student Services Office (ISSO) to review your case. You must be "in status" at the time you request the change to F1.

Before you schedule an appointment and/or request a Change of Status I-20, please send the following to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for validation: If you choose to apply for a Change of Status with USCIS on your own or with a lawyer, the following documents will still need to be submitted to the ISSO before a Form I-20 will be issued.

  1. Submit a copy of your current Passport
  2. Submit a copy of your current visa
  3. Submit a copy of your I-94 Record
  4. Submit a copy of your DS-2019 (if applicable)

Please Note: In in the subject line of your email, please write – “Change of Status Request – Eligibility”. An ISS Officer will respond to you within 48 business hours.

If approved by the ISSO, please contact the Admissions Department to continue the admission process:

  • Visit the VIU Apply Now page.
  • Choose a program of study.
  • Comply with all the application, and admissions requirements for the program chosen.
  • Pay the application fee.
  • Provide evidence of full financial support that will be shown on the I-20.

Please Note: Once accepted by the Admissions Department, a Change of Status I-20 will then be processed.  

Documents to be sent to USCIS for a Change of Status request:

  • Form I-539
  • Check payable to “U.S. Department of Homeland Security” for $290.00
  • A receipt of SEVIS Fee for $200.00. Please check www.fmjfee.com for more details.
  • Copy of your Passport pages showing both the picture and expiration date
  • Copy of your U.S. visa page
  • Copy of your I-94 Record or Card (if applicable)
  • Copies of your dependents I-94 records (if applicable)
  • Form I-20 (Change of status requested) – you will receive this from the Admissions Department once you are accepted to VIU, and the ISSO has issued the I-20.
  • Financial support documents
  • Original Bank statement or Copy of W-2 form showing financial proof
  • Original I-134 Form (Affidavit of Support) or the Statement of Financial Support Form
  • Letter from you to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) stating why you wish to change status

Please Note: If you are planning on including dependents in your application, please submit the applicable dependent documents as well. (Ex. Passport, Visa, Marriage/Birth Certificate, I-94 Records)

* If you are traveling outside the U.S. you cannot apply for a Change of Status; you will need to contact the Admissions Department to obtain an Initial I-20.

** If you are applying for a change of status from J1 to F1 – Please contact the ISSO for more information about your eligibility

The Mailing address is:
USCIS
ATTN: I-539
2501 S. State Highway 121 Business
Suite 400
Lewisville, TX 75067

Please Note: Be sure to keep a photocopy of each item you send to USCIS for your personal records. We strongly recommend that you mail your application documents by “Return Receipt Requested/ Certified U.S. mail.”