Immigration

Planning for Spring 2022

(Updated October 26, 2021) 

SEVP confirmed, on April 26, 2021, that the guidance they issued in March 2020 would apply for the 2021/2022 Academic Year.   ​This guidance allows F-1 students at schools still operating with temporary measures to be exempt from online course mode limitations.  As the university works towards adding more in-person courses and fewer restrictions for the future, we are still operating with temporary measures as outlined in the return to campus plan.  For information on what USF is doing to stop the spread, please visit: https://www.usf.edu/coronavirus/

We have updated our advice for Spring 2022 below.

Spring 2022  

F-1 Students Continuing Their Studies at USF

  • We encourage you to make plans to travel back to the US and to your USF campus in time to begin classes for Spring 2022.
    • If you are outside the US, you need a valid passport, valid F-1 visa stamp, and most recent I-20 with a travel signature on page 2 for the return. A travel signature is good for one year from the date it was initially signed.
    • If you do not have a travel signature or it is expired, you can request a new one by completing the travel signature request on iStart.
  • You must register full-time.
    • Graduate students = 9 hours
    • Undergraduate students = 12 hours
  • You may select ANY combination of course delivery modes for your Spring 2022 schedule.
  • You must obtain health insurance that meets Florida requirements.
  • Continuing F-1 students include students changing levels ex. Pathway to Degree, Bachelor to Master, or Master to PhD.


NOTE: If you are not able to travel or are unable to come to the US, you can maintain F-1 status while studying outside the US.  You do not need to contact us since we will keep your F-1 status in official university records.

  • See SHS for any process to waive US health insurance.
  • You need to work with your academic department to find appropriate online course options.  There is not the same full range of options for spring.
  • You cannot remain employed if you are in ANY on-campus position including GA/TA/RA’s.
  • If you cannot be full-time, you can seek an AEW in iStart.  Doing this means you may need to pay the SEVIS fee again and will lose eligibility towards CPT (internships) and OPT.

New F-1 Students Beginning Their Studies or New Program at USF

  • You should arrive to the US and your USF campus no later than the first week of the semester to your program at USF. You cannot arrive late. 
  • You must register full-time.
    • Graduate students = 9 hours
    • Undergraduate students = 12 hours
  • You must select at least ONE in-person courses categorized as classroom (CL) or hybrid (HB) delivery.
  • You must obtain health insurance that meets Florida requirements.

NOTE: If you have travel or visa delays and are unable to come to the US, send an email to immigrationprocessing@usf.edu.

New Students Transferring F-1 Status from Another US School to USF

  • You should arrive to your USF campus no later than the first week of the semester to begin your program at USF. You cannot arrive late.
  • You must register full-time.
    • Graduate students = 9 hours
    • Undergraduate students = 12 hours
  • You must select at least ONE in-person courses categorized as classroom (CL) or hybrid (HB) delivery.
  • You must obtain health insurance that meets Florida requirements.

NOTE: If you have travel or visa delays and are unable to come to the US, send an email to immigrationprocessing@usf.edu.

Additional Resources

See the international student FAQs for more answers to detailed questions.

Students wishing to meet with an immigration advisor should complete the Request Advisor Appointment E-Form in iStart. An advisor will arrange a remote appointment at the student’s convenience (any time zone).