J-1 EV Student Program Extension
An international student in J-1 status must always maintain accurate academic information in their SEVIS record and on their Form DS-2019. If you find that you will not complete your academic program requirements by the end date listed on your DS-2019, you must request a program extension with the Office of International Services.
J-1 EV Students sponsored by third-party organizations such as the Institute for International Education (IIE) should connect with their program sponsor about requesting a DS-2019 program extension. Learn more about third-party J-1 Exchange Visitor sponsors.
Eligibility Heading link
To be eligible for a DS-2019 program extension, you and your academic department must establish a compelling academic reason for the delay such as a change in major field of study, research topic, or unexpected research problem. Additionally, extensions can be requested based on a documented medical reason. Delays in completing program requirements that are caused by academic probation or suspension are not acceptable reasons for a DS-2019 program extension. Please see the DS-2019 Program Extension E-Form in myOIS for a complete list of eligibility requirements.
Timing Heading link
Program Extensions can be requested as early as the semester before the program end date currently listed on your DS-2019 and ideally no later than one month prior to the current end date. Program extension requests that are submitted accurately and completely take a minimum of five business days to process in OIS. Unfortunately, program extensions cannot be requested after the end date currently listed on the SEVIS record and DS-2019.
Steps to request a program extension on your DS-2019 Heading link
- Meet with your academic advisor to review your progress in the program. During this conversation, you and your advisor will review your requirements for degree completion and determine what your new expected program completion date will be.
- Submit the Program Extension E-Form in myOIS. The e-form will ask you to identify the academic advisor who will confirm the reason for the delay and the new expected program completion date. The e-form will also ask you to submit evidence of funding for the length of the extension, up to one academic year. Learn more about international student funding and documentation requirements.
- Confirm that your academic advisor has received and submitted their supporting myOIS e-form. Your advisor can reach out to OIS directly with questions.
- Collect and sign your new DS-2019. When the program extension request is complete, OIS will contact you with options for receiving your new DS-2019 reflecting the new program completion date.
FAQs Heading link
Here are some frequently asked questions about the J-1 program extension process.
How far in advance can I submit the I-20 program extension request?
The earliest you can submit an extension request is the semester before the program end date currently listed on your DS-2019.
How late can I submit the program extension request?
We strongly encourage you to submit your program extension request at minimum one month prior to the program end date currently listed on your DS-2019. The minimum OIS processing time for a complete and accurate program extension request is five business days. Please note that, in most cases, program extensions cannot be granted after the current end date listed in your SEVIS record and on your DS-2019. Failure to submit a timely program extension request could result in the loss of J-1 status.
How long can the program extension be?
You can extend your DS-2019 for up to 12 months from your current program end date.
I am an exchange student participating in the UIC Exchange Program. Can I extend my DS-2019?
The length of your exchange program is agreed upon by you, your home institution, and UIC. If you are curious about extending the length of your exchange experience at UIC, please email email@example.com.