Changing Visa Status

If you are admitted to UConn, or are a current UConn student already in the United States with a visa that does not permit study, you may be able to change to F-1 or J-1 visa to study at UConn. We advise most UConn students to obtain a student visa through travel, but for some, this may not be a good option. If you cannot travel, you may be able to file a change of status application (Form I-539) with the U.S. government without leaving the country.

If you are considering this option, schedule an appointment with your ISSS advisor to discuss your eligibility and the process.

Change of Status key facts:

  • If you are studying on a dependent visa and you will “age out” of that visa, contact ISSS at least one year before turning 21.


  • Change of status applications can take a very long time to process– check current processing times here. Select Form I-539 and Vermont Service Center from the drop down menu.


  • USCIS requires that you maintain your current active status until the date that your F-1 visa change of status is approved.


  • If you have a GA-ship, Change of Status may not be a viable option for you due to long processing times.


  • ISSS must receive your Form I-20/DS-2019 request for Change of Status applications at least four months prior to the semester for which you wish to change status.


  • If you completed a J-1 Exchange Visitor program in the United States and you are subject to the 212(e) home residency requirement, you may not change visa status through this process. You will be required to apply for a new non-immigrant visa at a U.S. embassy/consulate abroad unless you have a waiver of the 212(e) requirement.


USCIS Form I-539

USCIS How Do I Change to another Nonimmigrant Status?

USCIS Changing to a Nonimmigrant F or M Student Status