Immigration Documents & Travel Requirements

On this page you will find information on the immigration documents you will need to attend Bucknell, and how to maintain legal status and travel outside the U.S. while studying at Bucknell.

Most students attend on a student visa (F-1 or J-1). Bucknell does enroll students on various other statuses, ranging from permanent residency to various dependent visas, asylum and others. If you have questions about your eligibility to enroll, please contact International Student & Scholar Services.


SEVIS is the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System, an internet database run by the U.S. government. All U.S. educational institutions that enroll international students use this database to generate your I-20 or DS-2019 documents. You must pay the SEVIS Fee before your visa interview. The SEVIS fee is a one-time payment associated with your SEVIS number. Your 10-digit SEVIS number starts with the letter "N" and is located at the top right of your I-20 or DS-2019.

Your Immigration Documents


Renew your passport before it expires. Passports should be valid for at least six months after your date of arrival in the U.S. Your passport can be renewed while you're are in the U.S. Contact your country's embassy or consulate for instructions.


Your F-1 or J-1 visa is like an admission ticket. It only needs to be valid at the time you enter the U.S. Once you are here, the F-1 or J-1 visa can expire, as long as your I-20 or DS-2019 is current (unexpired) and you are maintaining your student status.


This is the form ISS issues for you from your SEVIS record, for F-1 study. Please always verify that all details on the form are correct.


This is the form ISS issues for you from your SEVIS record, for J-1 study or work. Please always verify that all details on the form are correct.


This document is used by the U.S. government to track and approve your entry into the U.S. You will need your most recent printed I-94 to enroll for payroll at Bucknell, to receive your Social Security card and to apply for a driver's license or state ID. This document changes each time you leave the country so you need to print a new one each time you enter the U.S.

Access and print your I-94

On the I-94, the D/S annotation means "Duration of Status." This essentially means that you are eligible to remain in the U.S. for as long as you are maintaining your student status and pursuing your degree. For most students, this record is now electronic. A few students (particularly Canadian students who drive into the U.S.) may receive a paper copy.

Requirements for Maintaining Legal Status

  1. Keep your address current. All F-1 and J-1 students must update their address within 10 days of moving. If you are an undergraduate student living on campus, your housing information will be automatically updated when you change rooms. If you are a graduate student, please report your current address directly to International Student & Scholar Services.
  2. Keep all status information current. Be sure to tell International Student & Scholar Services if your name changes or status changes (for example, due to marriage, divorce or obtaining permanent residency in the U.S.).
  3. Maintain the minimum enrollment requirements. Undergraduates must be enrolled in at least three courses per semester, and seven for the academic year in total to be considered full-time. Graduate students must be enrolled in at least in two courses per semester to be considered full-time. Any drop below these minimums requires authorization from International Student & Scholar Services. This authorization will only be granted under very specific and limited circumstances.
  4. Follow the Bucknell Student Code of Conduct and obey all local laws. International Student & Scholar Services must report any disciplinary action taken by Bucknell against a student as a result of the student being convicted of a crime.
  5. For Fall 2020, additional flexibility is in place to best support international students during the pandemic crisis. As such, ISS is able to e-mail updated I-20's and DS-2019's. We are also able to keep your SEVIS record registered as "active" even if you are enrolled abroad, or in some cases, taking a leave of absence. Please contact with questions.

Travel Outside the U.S.

If you plan on leaving the U.S., make sure you have the following documents:

  • A passport, valid for at least six months after the date you plan to re-enter the U.S.
  • Your visa, which must be valid on the day you plan to re-enter the U.S. Visas can only be renewed outside the U.S.
  • I-20 or DS-2019 signed for travel. You must get a "travel signature" on your document before you leave campus. Contact International Student & Scholar Services for this signature.
    • I-20s are signed on the second page and each signature is valid for a maximum of one year.
    • DS-2019s are signed on the first page and each signature is valid for one year.

Contact Details

International Student & Scholar Services


08:30 a.m. - 04:30 p.m.