As we approach the end of the semester, most of you will begin to think about taking trips over the summer. Some of those trips will take you outside the United States. If that is you, this post is for you.
The first thing to mention is that last year, US Immigration redesigned the I-20 form. Some, mostly our new students, have already received one of these updated forms. For those that didn't, it was no problem, as both were accepted as you re-entered the US. We have been informed that will no longer be the case. So, if you are planning to travel outside the US this summer, even if you still have a valid signature, you MUST contact someone at International Affairs to print you a new I-20. Will they deny you entry if you have a valid I-20, with a valid travel signature, just because it is the older version? I don't know, but why would you risk it if all you need to do is have a new one printed?
Secondly, if you are in need of a travel signature, whether your current signature is expiring or you just need an updated form, you MUST fill out and bring the Request For Travel Signature form with your I-20 for someone to sign it. We have been using this form for a year, now. The form helps us process your I-20 for travel much faster, and reduces the number of students who need to be called back in due to issues, such as holds, wrong I-20, etc. The form asks you to verify your passport expiration, visa expiration, and make sure there are no holds on your account. It is really for your benefit, as well as ours. It reduces the processing time from 3 days to 1 day, though, we still ask that you bring your I-20 to us for signature 1 to 2 weeks prior to your planned departure. Don't let an emergency on our part cause you to miss your flight because we didn't have enough time to get to your form.
There are two ways you can get the form. First, you can come to either Peck Hall 208 or Jones Hall 111 to pick up a form. Take the form with you, verify the dates in your passport and that you have no holds, then return with both forms and leave it with us to sign. Secondly, you can print the form from the ISSS page, or here, fill it out, and bring it to either office for signature.
*Please note, the Request For Travel Signature form only applies to undergraduate students. Graduate students MUST take their I-20 to the Graduate Studies office for signature. Please check with them for their process.