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Transfer In and Out

F-1 Students

Admission to a new school does not by itself authorize an F-1 student to begin studying full-time at the new school. The student must request the current school to transfer/release the SEVIS I-20 record to the new school before studying full-time at the new school. The U.S. government calls this process a "SEVIS transfer." It is different from an "academic transfer" which transfers credits from one institution to another.

An F-1 student may transfer between SEVP-certified schools. The transfer process is a way to electronically move Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) records and retain the same SEVIS identification (ID) number for the student.

The SEVIS transfer process:

  • Sets a date on which responsibility for the student record transfers
  • Helps ensure that the transfer-in school updates and activates the student's record

Transfer In - Coming to MSU

Transfer to MSU Video Image.png

To learn how to transfer your SEVIS record (I-20) from another institution to MSU, watch the MSU transfer in video and follow the steps below.

 

 


Step One

Receive MSU acceptance letter.

Step Two

Complete the MSU Transfer In Form for Students (PDF). An international student advisor at your current institution must fill out a section on this form.

  • Provide your MSU acceptance letter to an international student advisor at your current institution.
  • Choose a SEVIS release date and detail that date on the MSU Transfer In form. This date is important because MSU cannot issue an I-20 until after that date. The SEVIS release date must be within 60 days of your graduation or the end date listed on your I-20.
  • Ask an international student advisor at your current institution to release your SEVIS record (I-20) to Michigan State University on the SEVIS release date. Your current institution may have a transfer out form that you have to complete.

Step Three

Email the completed MSU Transfer In Form to OISS at oiss(at)msu.edu or fax the form to OISS. 

Step Four

Undergraduate Students

  • Provide your proof of funding to the MSU Office of Admissions and pay your Advanced Enrollment Deposit (AED).
  • Check Your Account for required documents and admissions information. 
  • Learn more about next steps for admitted international students on the MSU Office of Admissions website.

Graduate Students without an assistantship

  • Provide your proof of funding to your MSU department.

Step Five

OISS at MSU will issue a transfer-pending I-20 to you within 14 days of your SEVIS release date. There will be a delay if you do not submit your proof of funding to MSU. 

Step Six

Check your MSU email address. OISS will email you instructions on how to provide your mailing address and pay for express shipping. After you have paid for shipping, OISS will mail your I-20 to you. 

Step Seven 

Attend orientation.

Transfer Out - Leaving MSU

To transfer your SEVIS record (I-20) from MSU to another institution, follow the steps below.

Eligibility for a SEVIS Record Transfer

  1. You must be maintaining F-1 status.
  2. If you have already graduated, you must be within your 60-day grace period.
  3. The start date at your new school must be within five months of your "transfer out" date in SEVIS or your program completion date, whichever is earlier.
  4. For students authorized for post-completion OPT, the new program start date must be within five months of your SEVIS "transfer out" date or the end of the OPT authorization, whichever is earlier. OPT ends on the transfer release date.

Transfer Out Steps

Step One

Get admitted to another SEVP-certified institution.

Step Two

Complete the MSU Transfer Out Form for F-1 Students (PDF)

  • Choose a SEVIS release date
  • Graduate students or ELC students must receive a signature from their graduate academic advisor or ELC advisor

Step Three

Submit your acceptance letter and MSU Transfer Out Form to OISS at MSU by appointment or during walk-in advising hours

Step Four

OISS will transfer your SEVIS record (I-20) to your new institution on the SEVIS release date.

Step Five

Check with your new institution for information regarding required financial documents, next steps for admitted students, and orientation. Your new institution can create a transfer-pending I-20 for you after OISS transfers your SEVIS record (I-20). 

J-1 Students

J-1 students may transfer from their SEVIS record (DS-2019) from one program sponsor to another if the purpose of the transfer is to complete the academic objective for which they were admitted to the U.S.

Admission to a new school does not by itself authorize a J-1 student to begin studying full-time at the new school. The student must request the current school to transfer/release their SEVIS record (DS-2019) to the new school before studying full-time at the new school. The U.S. government calls this process a "SEVIS transfer." It is different from an "academic transfer" which transfers credits from one institution to another.

The transfer process is a way to electronically move Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) records and retain the same SEVIS identification (ID) number for the student.

The SEVIS transfer process does both of the following:

  • Sets a date on which responsibility for the student record transfers
  • Helps ensure that the transfer-in school updates and validates the student's record

Transfer In - Coming to MSU

Eligibility Requirements

You are eligible to transfer your J-1 SEVIS record (DS-2019) if you meet the following requirements:

  • You have been admitted to a full-time academic program at MSU.
  • You are currently in valid J-1 student status in a degree program.
  • The purpose of the transfer is to complete the original educational objective for which you first came to the U.S. as a J-1 Student. If you are making a change to your field of study, you are not eligible for a J-1 transfer.
  • Your current institution must electronically "transfer out" your J-1 SEVIS record to MSU before the expiration of your current DS-2019.

How to Transfer

  1. Meet with a J-1 advisor at your current institution and discuss your transfer plan and your SEVIS record release date.

  2. Complete the Transfer In Form for Students (PDF).

    This will require you to meet with a J-1 advisor in your current institution who will complete the form. You will need to choose a transfer release date. The "release date" is the date on which MSU will have ownership of your SEVIS record. The release date for your J-1 SEVIS record must be before the expiration date of the DS-2019.

  3. Request a DS-2019 from OISS 

    Degree Seeking Students: J-1 DS-2019 Degree-Seeking Student Request for New Program (PDF) 
    Non-Degree Seeking Students: J-1 DS-2019 Non-Degree Student Request for New Program (PDF)

  4. OISS will review your application.

  5. Once approved, OISS will notify you by email.

  6. Within 15 days after your program start date at MSU, check-in at OISS and get your new MSU DS-2019. 

    Step One 
    Make an appointment with a J-1 advisor at OISS

    Step Two
    Check in at OISS in order to obtain your new DS-2019. This step is necessary to complete the transfer and validate your MSU SEVIS record. 

    Learn more about the documents you need to bring with you to check-in

  7. Attend Orientation

    Learn more about J-1 Student orientation

Transfer Out - Leaving MSU

If you're transferring to another institution as a J-1 Student, you need to ask OISS to release your SEVIS record (DS-2019) to the new institution on a date that you choose, called the SEVIS "release date." Your new institution will have ownership of your record on the release date. Your new institution can create a DS-2019 for you after the release date.

Eligibility Requirements

  • The purpose of a J-1 student transfer must be to complete the original educational objective for which you first came to the U.S. as a J-1 student. If you are making a change to your field of study, you are not eligible for a J-1 student transfer.
  • To transfer your SEVIS record (DS-2019), you must be maintaining J-1 status and your DS-2019 end date must be in the future.

How to Transfer

1. Meet with a J-1 advisor at OISS and discuss the transfer process.

2. Submit the following documents to OISS.

3. OISS will review your application.

4. Once approved, we will release your SEVIS record (DS-2019) to your new institution on the release date.

    • On this date, your new institution will have ownership of your SEVIS record and we will no longer have access to it.
    • You must stop any on-campus employment at MSU or Academic Training on the release date.
    • Check with your new institution to find out what you need to do in order to obtain your new DS-2019.

J-1 Scholars

J-1 scholars may transfer from their SEVIS record (DS-2019) from one program sponsor to another if the purpose of the transfer is to complete the academic objective for which they were admitted to the U.S.

The transfer process is a way to electronically move Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) records and retain the same SEVIS identification (ID) number for the scholar.

Transfer In - Coming to MSU

Eligibility Requirements

It may be possible to transfer your SEVIS record (DS-2019) to MSU for the remainder of the 5-year limit for J-1 Scholars if the following condition apply:

  • You are currently in the U.S. as a researcher or professor in valid J-1 status at another institution.

  • The transfer must be initiated by your current institution while you are still in status with an unexpired DS-2019.

  • The purpose of the transfer is to complete the academic objective for which you were admitted to the U.S.

How to Transfer

  1. Meet with a J-1 advisor in your current institution and discuss your transfer plan and your SEVIS record release date.

  2. Complete the MSU Transfer In Form for J-1 Scholars (PDF) 

    This will require you to meet with a J-1 advisor who will complete the form. You will need to choose a transfer release date. The "release date" is the date on which MSU will have ownership of your SEVIS record. The release date for your J-1 SEVIS record must be before the expiration date of your DS-2019.

  3. Request a DS-2019 from OISS 

    Your host department at MSU will work with you and OISS to request a DS-2019 for you. Contact your host department if you have questions about the request process. 

  4. OISS will review the request and communicate with your host department and you if we need more information.

    Within 15 days after your program start date at MSU:

    Step One 
    Make an appointment with a J-1 advisor at OISS

    Step Two 
    Check in at OISS in order to obtain your new DS-2019. This step is necessary to complete the transfer and validate your MSU SEVIS record. 

    Learn more about the documents you need to bring with you to check-in
  5. Attend Orientation

    Learn more about J-1 Student orientation

Transfer Out - Leaving MSU

If you're transferring to another institution as a J-1 Scholar, you need to ask OISS to release your SEVIS record (DS-2019) to the new institution on a date that you choose, called the SEVS "release date." Your new institution will have ownership of your record on the release date. Your new institution can create a DS-2019 for you after the release date.

Eligibility Requirements

It may be possible to transfer your J-1 SEVIS record to a new institution for the remainder of the 5-year limit for J-1 Scholars if you meet all of the following:

  • You are currently in valid J-1 status as a researcher or professor at MSU and have been offered a position at another institution.

  • The transfer will be initiated while you are still in J-1 status at MSU.

  • Your DS-2019 end date is in the future.

  • The purpose of the transfer is to complete the original academic/professional objective for which you first came to the U.S. as a J-1 scholar. If you are making a change to your field of research, you are not eligible for a J-1 scholar transfer.

How to Transfer

1. Meet with a J-1 advisor at OISS and discuss your transfer process.

2. Submit the following documents to OISS.

3. OISS will review your application.

4. Once approved, we will release your SEVIS record to your new institution on the release date.

    • On this date, your new institution will have ownership of your SEVIS record and we will no longer have access to it. 

    • Check with your new institution to find out what you need to do in order to obtain a new DS-2019.