There are many reasons why students choose to engage in study abroad opportunities during their degree programs. You can find more information on available study abroad programs and how to connect with a Global Experience Advisor on the GEO website. After confirming admission to a study abroad program, you will need to follow up with OGS to request an I-20 for study abroad.
When Should You Request An I-20 for Study Abroad
After you receive your Letter of Enrollment from GEO or the sponsoring Northeastern University Academic Department, you should request an I-20 for study abroad from OGS. You should request the updated I-20 before leaving the U.S. to participate in your study abroad program.
Who Needs an I-20 for Study Abroad
F-1 students studying abroad during the academic year will require an updated I-20 with a study abroad remark. Your updated I-20 will be signed for travel and is valid for one year. Please be aware of your program end date on the page 1 of the I-20. If your program end date will occur in less than one year, your travel signature is valid only until the program end date listed on your I-20.
What You Will Need
You must have a “Letter of Enrollment” from the Global Experience Office or from the academic department at Northeastern University that is sponsoring the study abroad which confirms the following:
- Exact dates of study abroad.
- Location (institution, city, country) of study abroad.
After you obtain the letter, please go to Request for SEVIS I-20/DS-2019.
- A letter from your host institution abroad or other agency/company will not be acceptable.
- If you study abroad only during the summer term, you do not need to request a study abroad I-20.
Maintaining Status While Studying Abroad
You are required to maintain full-time enrollment in order to maintain your F-1 immigration status while studying abroad. Any changes in enrollment during your study abroad program could affect your ability to return to the U.S.
Re-entering the United States
At the conclusion of your study abroad program, you should prepare the following documents to re-enter the U.S. and resume your studies at Northeastern University:
- Valid F-1 U.S. entry visa
- Form I-20 with study abroad remark and travel signature
- Copy of your “Letter of Enrollment” from GEO or from the academic department at Northeastern University that is sponsoring the study abroad program
- Additional information on Arriving in the U.S. can be found on the OGS website
- If your F-1 U.S. entry visa is expired or will expire while studying overseas, you will need to apply for a new visa before making travel plans to return to the US. If the visa application is denied, you must obtain a new visa in your home country to return to the U.S.