MAINTAINING STATUS

Key to maintaining your F-1 Visa status is the need to meet the following requirements:

 

In order to be considered “in-status” for your F-1 Visa, you are required to be a full-time student during the fall and spring semesters.  While enrolled, you must be registered for at least 12 credit hours while attending classes at OTC. A waiver to drop below full-time student status is provided only in emergency situations and must be approved by the IPO before any class can be dropped. If you drop any classes without the express approval of the IPO Director, you will be considered out-of-status for your F-1 Visa, and your SEVIS account will be terminated.

The Student and Exchange Visitor Program states that F-1 Visa students can take no more than three credits per term or session of on-line or distance education, which can be counted towards the full-course study requirement. 8 C.F.R. 214.2 (f)(6)(i)(G).

The Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) clearly states that students attending college on an F-1 Visa are required to demonstrate “normal academic progress” (8 C.F.R. 214.2(f)(5)(i). According to OTC policy, at the end of three consecutive probationary semesters, students who have not demonstrated satisfactory progress will be suspended. Once suspended, as an international student you would no longer be considered “in status” for an F-1 Visa, and the IPO would be required to terminate your SEVIS account. For more information concerning the institutional probation and suspension policy, check pages 16 and 17 of the Student Handbook, or use the link provided below. If you have any questions or need assistance in developing an academic plan to help restore your GPA to a satisfactory level, please contact the IPO.

International students are not permitted to work off-campus while attending college on an F-1 visa. Waivers to work off-campus are possible only under situations of extreme financial hardship after one year of successful academic performance, as approved by the IPO Director. Eligible students can apply for OPT or CPT to work off campus.  Unauthorized work off-campus will result in termination of your SEVIS account, and you will be considered out-of-status for yoru F-1 visa.

  • Change your Address
  • Change your Degree or Program of Study at OTC
  • Get Married or Otherwise Change your Name
  • Want to Get Permission to Drop Below Full-time Status
  • Want to Apply for a Waiver to Work Off-campus

Procedures for Temporary Protected Status Students

At Ozarks Technical Community College

Temporary Protected Status (TPS) is granted to people from selected countries which the US has recognized as currently in turmoil and therefore unsafe.  TPS status held concurrent to or with the F-1 (international student) visa provides the following additional privileges for international students at OTC:

  1. A student will be eligible to work off-campus, in the same manner as having obtained an economic hardship waiver.
  2. Maintenance of the F-1 visa will allow students to remain in the US in legal status after expiration of their TPS status, provide their F-1 program end-date has not passed.

As noted in the USCIS website, TPS status does not lead to a green card, and does not place the bearer in immigration status.  Much like the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) which has a two-year expiration, TPS is a limited status and does not confer permanent residence or the intention of permanent residence, unlike refugee or asylum status.  If they so desire, students do have the right to apply for a green card through refugee or asylum or through the permanent resident immigration application process.

Because TPS is a temporary provision, not a means of obtaining permanent residence or citizenship, non-immigrant (i.e., international student) tuition rates will be charged TPS students.  If a new TPS student does not go through the F-1 visa admission process at OTC, they will be required to depart once their TPS status has expired, as they will no longer be in legal status.

Additional information may be found on the links listed below:

Important Links