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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato

J-1 Exchange Students

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Immigration status is granted at the U.S. port of entry. You have J-1 student status. In most situations your visa type and immigration status are the same, unless you have changed your immigration status after entering the U.S. People in J-1 status who are subject to the "two-year home country residency requirement" may not change to any other non-immigrant status within the U.S. Exchange visitors who enter the U.S. in one exchange visitor category, such as "student", are rarely permitted to change to another category, such as "researcher".

How to Maintain your Immigration Status in the U.S.

Information with regard to maintain status is available here.

Change of address or status

Change of Address

The immigration regulations require you to update your local residential address within 10 days of moving within the U.S. You must do this by updating your local address in Eservices AND notifying the CISS. You are required to use a physical residential address and not a PO Box.

Change of Status

When you finish your program and leave the U.S. permanently or change to another visa status (for instance if an employer plans to do an H1B visa application for you after you graduate), come to the CISS to notify us of your plans.

Dependent Information

An exchange visitor's spouse or child enters the U.S. in J-2 status and may stay for as long as the J-1 person is authorized to remain.

For traveling and re-entering the U.S., J-2 dependents need all the same documents as the J-1 would need as outlined above including as DS-2019 that is produced with the J-2's biographical information.

J-2 dependents must have insurance that meets the U.S. State Department requirements during their entire stay in the U.S. While J-2 dependents have the option to apply for work permission on form I-765, the salary is not to support the J-1 exchange visitor. Since this process can be complicated, please see an international advisor prior to proceeding with work permission.

Employment Information

For information regarding employment for J-1 students, please click here. Included is information on eligibility, limitations and applications.

Program Extension

If you wish to extend your stay in Mankato there are some logistical matters that you need to be away of when your program is sponsored by MSU P-1-04472. You can also make an appointment to speak with an advisor.

Immigration matters

  • You need to obtain permission from your host university as well as Minnesota State University, Mankato to identify if you are eligible for an extension. This request must be done at least 30 days in advance of the end date on your DS-2019.
  • You will need to be extended both within our MSU database and within the U.S. Department of State's SEVIS database. You will receive a new DS-2019s. There is no need to do anything but hold onto the new form. Keep it for entry/exit to/from the US and use both the old and the new one for travel (plus unofficial trascript to show pre-registration for following semester)
  • Your initial visa can expire with no problems IF YOU REMAIN IN THE U.S. UNTIL THE END OF STUDIES
  • IF YOU PLAN TO LEAVE THE U.S., you must come and talk with an advisor in the Kearney International Center first to determine whether or not you may need to apply for a new visa to re-enter the U.S.

Class registration for next semester

With the assistance of the Office of the Registrar, you will be allowed to register as 3rd year students to allow you to register early. Classes are very competitive so you will want to have your choices for classes ready as soon as classes are posted. If you have any questions, please contact the Registration Help Desk located at WA 132.

Health insurance: You will see that this will be added to your account. You will need to pay this when you are approved for the extension.

Travel Information

If you intend to travel outside of the U.S., please have the Kearney International Center review and sign your current DS-2019 at least five business days prior to your departure. You may wish to review U.S. government procedures in advance of your travel.

Please fill out the [PDF]Request for Travel Signature form (139 KiB) before coming to the office.

Traveling to Canada

Before traveling to Canada, come to the ISSO or check the Canadian visa requirements. Also, note that you CAN re-enter the U.S. from Canada with an expired U.S. visa stamp if you meet the criteria