Taking a Leave of Absence from NDSU
International students should not take a leave of absence or withdraw from NDSU without first consulting with their international student advisor about the consequences of this action. Students cannot remain in the United States while taking a leave of absence or a semester off. Students taking a semester off or more must spend this time outside of the United States. (Please note: this does not apply to the summer term)
Procedure for requesting a leave of absence from NDSU:
- Read, sign, and submit the Leave of Absence request form to the Office of International Programs. Your international student advisor will be in contact with you. Please read the statement at the end of the form carefully so that you understand what effect your absence has on your I-20 and visa. If your return is not scheduled for a set date in the future, please be aware that your international student advisor may ask you to contact the OIP again when you are more sure about your return, so that more can be discussed at that time since regulations do change.
- If you have already registered for the term in which you will be absent, cancel your registration or withdraw to zero from NDSU. Please see the Forms page on the Bison Connection website for more information.
- Visit with other offices on campus where necessary so that they are kept informed of the fact you will no longer be an NDSU student. For example - if you have on-campus housing, speak with Residence Life; and if you are working on-campus, speak with the department or office in which you are working so they can notify Payroll. If you are an IELP (Intensive English Language Program) student, please speak with Carol Bishop, the IELP Program Coordinator.
- Begin making arrangements to depart the United States within 2 weeks. Federal immigration regulations allow for a 15-day grace period after an authorized withdrawal. Staying longer than the 15 days allowed can jeopardize your immigration status. If you have F-2 dependents, they are not permitted to remain in the U.S. during this time and must leave with you.
- Your international student advisor will email you to say that your form has been processed. Your SEVIS record will be terminated to show that you have requested an authorized early withdrawal from NDSU. You must also stop any employment on- or off-campus.
- GRADUATE STUDENTS: You must also speak with your department and formally request a leave of absence from the Graduate School.
Returning to NDSU
- You must first reactivate your enrollment at NDSU by filling out the Reactivation of Student Status form found on the Bison Connection website. Graduate students: You must contact the Graduate School to resume your program.
- Register for the upcoming term and then contact your international student advisor at least 1-2 months in advance of your return. ***Do not attempt to re-enter the U.S. before first consulting with your international student advisor. Remember, your I-20 is in terminated status and you could be refused entry if you did not follow the appropriate steps to come back to NDSU.
- Make arrangements as directed by your advisor regarding financial documentation and I-20 or visa issuance. At this time, your international student advisor will tell you whether or not you need a new I-20 and/or visa. Every student's situation may vary so please consult with your advisor. *Please note that if at the time you plan to re-enter, you will have been absent from the U.S. for more than 5 months, you will need both a new I-20 and a new visa.
- Prepare to return to the United States
Immigration Forms and Resources for F-1 students
Please click below for Immigration Forms and Procedures related to F-1 students:
- Statement of International Student Responsibilities
- Bringing Dependents
- Change of Status to/from F-1
- Did you change your major?
- Graduation and Beyond
- I-20 Extensions
- Leave of Absence
- Maintaining your Status: Credits
- Reinstatement to F-1 Status
- Requesting OIP letters
- Social Security Cards & Drivers License
- Transferring to Another School
- Travelling Home
- Updating your Address
BACK to the main Immigration page.