Leaving the University of Arkansas

Leaving USA After Completion

For immigration purposes your I-20 completion date is the date you complete the requirements for your major program. Once you complete the requirements for your degree you have a 60 day grace period to remain in the U.S. If you are planning to leave the U.S. after you complete your program and are not applying for Optional Practical Training or moving on to a new program you must leave the U.S. by the 60th day of your grace period. Once you leave during your grace period you lose the remaining days of the grace period and could only come back into the U.S. with a new SEVIS record or with another visa status.

If you are completing your program and leaving the U.S. you will need to submit a Graduation Notice form. To submit this form login to isslink.uark.edu and select Graduation Notice from F-1 Student services. When you submit this form your SEVIS record will be shortened to reflect your completion date and will complete 60 days after that date.

Leaving USA Before Completion

If you are leaving the U.S. and not completing your degree you will need to consult with a Foreign Student Advisor either by scheduling an appointment or scheduling a phone consultation. Generally, the best option for your SEVISrecord is to request that the record be closed by using Authorized Early Withdrawal. Authorized Early Withdrawal will cleanly terminate your SEVIS record without any prejudice. When your record is closed for Authorized Early Withdrawal you must then depart the U.S. within 15 days. If you want to return to the U.S. as an F-1 student again you would need to reapply for a new I-20 on a new SEVIS record, repay the $200 SEVIS I-901 fee, and generally obtain a new F-1 visa corresponding to the new I-20's SEVIS number.

To request Authorized Early Withdrawal you will need to login to isslink.uark.edu and select Departure-Transfer Notice under F-1 Student Services. Then you will click "I am leaving the United States WITHOUT completing my degree/program requirements," select "I Am A F-1 Student Requesting Permission For Early Withdrawal," indicate the date you are departing the U.S. and then submit the form. When the Authorized Early Withdrawal is processed you will receive an email indicating that your SEVIS record has been closed and you will receive two letters explaining the withdrawal.