Additional Information

International Students at Taste of Africa

Maintaining F-1 Visa Status


Full Course Load Requirements

International students on an F-1 visa must maintain full-time student status in order to maintain legal status with the United States government. Full-time attendance is at least 12 credit hours of classes each semester. International students are not permitted to take more than one three-credit hour online class per semester or each summer session while remaining in the states. You will work with an academic advisor to determine which classes to take.

Students may be eligible to drop below a full course load for reasons relating to a student’s health conditions or economic status. These requests are reviewed on a case by case basis and require approval from the DSO. Talk to your DSO for more information. Exceptions to the full course load requirement are made for students in their last semester. Confirmation from the office of the registrar must be obtained before a request for a reduced course load can be honored.

Reporting Requirements

Students must report changes to their personal information within 10 days of the change. This includes:

  • US address,
  • Telephone number,
  • Changes to the address in the student’s home country,
  • Changes to the student’s major and/or minor
  • Changes in sponsorship or finances

Students must keep the Director of Multicultural Services updated on any change of address. Students also should notify the office with contact information during breaks in the event of disaster or emergencies.

Work on campus

International students have the option to pursue on-campus jobs in their first year. Students may work a maximum of 20 hours per week but most find they can only work 10 to 15 hours per week and still maintain good academic standing. Students may be able to earn around $2,000 USD per school year by working 10 to 15 hours per week. During scheduled breaks international student employees are permitted to work a maximum of 40 hours per week.  

Curricular Practical Training (CPT)

Practical training that occurs during a student’s course of study is referred to as CPT. CPT is authorized for students that wish to engage in intern and/or externship program for their specific degree. CPT activities must relate directly to a student’s major area of study, and must be an integral part of the school’s established curriculum.

A DSO can authorize CPT for an F-1 student if the student:

  • Has been lawfully enrolled on a full-time basis for at least a full academic year.
    Note: An exception exists for students in graduate studies whose programs require earlier training.
  • Is not studying English as a second language.
  • Has secured a training position.

A CPT application must be completed and signed by the student and the student’s academic advisor before the DSO will consider the request. Students must enroll in an internship credit with the Office of the Registrar and provide proof of enrollment prior to authorization. Students that complete one or more years of CPT are ineligible for OPT upon graduation. Contact your DSO for more information.

Housing policy

All students must live in campus housing until they become seniors, get married, or reach the age of 24. The International Student Scholarship will be reduced by 25% if a student moves off campus.

Optional Practical Training (OPT)

Optional Practical Training is a pre or post graduate employment program offered to all eligible international students. Students may apply for OPT no more than 90 before graduation, and 60 days after graduation. OPT workshops are held twice a month in February, March and April to assist student with the application process. Students are responsible for filing fees associated with the application. 

Important Information

Students losing their F-1 visa status by dropping below the minimum 12 credit hours, those who become academically ineligible to continue at the University, and those with serious infractions of campus rules or legal infractions resulting in conviction of a felony must return to their home countries immediately.

Helpful resources

https://studyinthestates.dhs.gov/

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