Maintaining F-1 status

U.S. Immigration and Customs enforcement requirements

Although you are not likely to have much direct contact with the various immigration services, you should be fully aware of the primary conditions imposed by the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement for you to retain your F-1 status.

Violation of any of these conditions could lead to serious trouble in the form of investigations, hearings,
or even deportation:

  1. You are not permitted to accept employment off campus without prior authorization.

  2. You must be a full-time student. US ICE regulations require you to pursue a "full course of study" at Diablo Valley College. A full course of study is defined as at least 12 academic units per term. You are required to see a DSO at the ISO office before dropping below 12 units regardless of your reasons. If you do not see a DSO before dropping below 12 units you will be considered immediately out of status. You must check with a DSO to see if you have a valid reason to be below 12 units. If it is your last term at DVC and you are finishing a program or transferring you are allowed to be below 12 units if you do not NEED 12 to complete your program. HOWEVER, you MUST inform the DSO that it is your last term.

  3. If you are transferring from another school or changing level, you must complete the transfer or change of level procedure within 15 days after the start of classes.

  4. You must maintain an updated address with the college at all times. A post office box is unacceptable.

  5. You must inform the DSO at DVC when you are leaving DVC permanently.  If you are leaving to transfer to another school you must present an admissions letter from that school to the DSO so that we can release your record.  If you are leaving the U.S. and do not plan on returning to DVC you must also let us know.  

  6. Your passport must be valid at all times during your stay in the U.S. For passport renewal, contact your consulate (see list of nearby consulates). Do not wait until your passport expires!