J-1 Status Overview

As a student in the U.S. in J-1 status, there are many laws, regulations and policies which interact to help you maintain your student status. The information below provides an general overview of J-1 requirements but is not a comprehensive list of all the things which may affect your J-1 status. Because your situation is unique in comparison to other students, always contact an advisor with International Student and Scholar Services for specific guidance with questions or concerns you have.

As a J-1 student, it is your responsibility to maintain your non-immigrant J-1 visa status. Failure to follow the rules and regulations for the J-1 visa can result in you losing immigration status, and may impact future visa applications or immigration statuses. To maintain your J-1 visa status:

  • Keep your passport valid at all times. You should have a minimum of 6 months of validity for your passport at any given time. You can renew your passport from within the United States in many instances.
  • Ensure your I-94 record is always indicates “J-1, D/S” when you re-enter the U.S.
  • Update your contact information (address, phone number, email) with the ISSS within 10 days of any changes.  This address cannot be a P.O. Box or an academic department address.
  • Complete your full-time class registration by the Census registration deadline. Full-time enrollment is 12 credits per semester for undergraduate students and 9 credits per semester for graduate students.
    • If you need to be enrolled for less than full-time, speak with and obtain authorization from the ISSS prior to dropping below full-time.
      • Information about authorized instances for dropping below full-time is available in this drop down menu under “Full-Time Enrollment Exceptions.”
  • Do not withdraw from coursework before you have spoken with your ISSS advisor.
  • Make normal progress toward completing a course of study in order to graduate on time.
  • Do not let your DS-2019 expire.
    • After your DS-2019 expires, you will enter your 30-day grace period and be required to depart the United States prior to the end of the 30 days. Be mindful of your DS-2019 end date, and request the appropriate benefit prior to the end of the DS-2019. You may be eligible for to start a new academic program, transfer to a new institution, or applying for Academic Training (AT). If you will not have completed your degree by your DS-2019 expiration date, you should speak with an ISSS advisor to see if you are eligible for an extension.
    • Additional information for each of the items listed above are available in this menu:
      • New academic program: Change of Major or Change of Level
      • Extension: Program Extension
      • Transferring to a new institution: Transfer Out From Mines 
  • Obtain all on-campus work, off-campus work, and academic training authorizations in advance of beginning employment. The authorization must be in writing and must come from an ISSS advisor.
  • Restrict your on-campus work to 20 hours per week during the fall and spring semesters. You may work full-time during the winter and summer vacations. You must maintain a current J-1 On-Campus Work Authorization Letter.
  • Do not work after completing your program of study unless you have been authorized for post-completion Academic Training by an ISSS advisor.
  • If traveling outside the U.S., verify your J-1 visa has not expired (except Canadian citizens) and you have a recent travel signature on your DS-2019.
  • Review your DS-2019 and visa to verify whether or not you are required to complete a 212(e) Home Residency Requirement in order to be eligible for specific other visa categories following the completion of your program.
    • Additional information for each of the items listed above are available in this menu:
      • New academic program: 212(e) Home Residency Requirement
  • Notify ISSS if you will complete your program 30 or more days prior to the end date on your most recent DS-2019.
  • Depart from the U.S. within 30 days after completing your program of study.
212(e) Home Residency Requirement

In some cases, J-1 holders are subject to a two-year home residence requirement which obliges the J-1 visa holder (and their J-2 dependents) to return to their country of permanent residency for two years before being eligible to apply for an immigrant visa or a non-immigrant H or L visa. The requirement also makes J-1 visa holders (and their J-2 dependents) ineligible to change to any other visa status within the United States if they are subject to it.

Not all J-1 visa holders are subject to this requirement. The requirement only applies to those individuals in one of the following situations:

  • J-1 visa holders who are funded by the United States Government, their own governments, or international organizations during part or all of their stay in the United States
  • J-1 visa holders whose skills are needed in their country of permanent residence as registered on the Exchange Visitor Skills List
  • J-1 visa holders who are graduates of foreign medical schools participating in internships, residencies, or clinical training programs in the United States sponsored by the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG)

The 212(e) home residence requirement will not prevent you from reentering the U.S. with an F-1 student, B-1/B-2 (tourist) or J-1 visa in the future, but it will prevent you from getting H-1B non-immigrant employment or Permanent Residence status unless the 2 year requirement is either fulfilled or waived. J-1 visa holders should check both their Forms DS-2019 and J-1 visas to see if they are subject to the two year home residence requirement, 212(e).


In certain instances, the 212(e) home residency requirement may be incorrectly applied to an exchange visitor’s record. If you determine you have been subject to this requirement in error, you may be eligible to apply for an advisory opinion by the U.S. Department of State to have the requirement removed from your record. Review the Advisory Opinion from the U.S. Department of State.


When the 212(e) home residency requirement is correctly applied, you may still be eligible for a waiver of the requirement in order to change status or apply for other non-immigrant and immigrant statuses. There are four categories in which a waiver of the Two-Year Foreign Residence Requirement may be granted. Additional information is available with the U.S. Department of State.

  • No objection waiver – this is a common form of waiver request
  • Interested U.S. government agency (IGA) waiver
  • Fear of persecution waiver
  • Exceptional hardship waiver


  • You are encouraged to review the U.S. Department of State web site for the most up-to-date information about the advisory opinion and waiver processes
  • Follow all instructions for the waiver application provided on the U.S. DoS website and mail documents in a timely manner.
  • Make copies of all documents that you send for your records.
  • Mail your documents using a method that will provide you with a record of the mailing, such as certified mail, express mail, or overnight mail.
  • Make sure the address that you list on the form is a valid address. Waiver Division mail may not be forwarded to alternative addresses nor can they be mailed out of the country.
  • If the Waiver Review Division approves the waiver request, your J-1 status cannot be extended even if you have not reached your maximum duration of time. You must complete the current J-1 program period by the end date on your DS-2019. For this reason, you should time your application after your program has been extended to the maximum time available and while there is still time remaining in the program in case of delays in the waiver procedures.
Address Update

As part of your J-1 status, you are required to report changes in your personal contact information with 10 days of the change happening. This includes your local U.S. address where you are currently residing and receiving mail, to include temporary addresses. It is an important component to maintaining valid J-1 status throughout your time at Mines. Please follow these steps to update your address:

  • Log on to Trailhead
  • Click on the “Self Service” button
  • Click on the “Personal Information” link
  • Click on the “Update Addresses and Phones” link
  • To update US address, select the “Local Mailing Address” in the drop-down menu for “Type of Address to Insert.”
  • Enter a start date in the field “Valid From This Date: MM/DD/YYYY” – DO NOT enter an end date.
  • Enter your complete U.S. mailing address where you currently reside as well as a telephone number.  Do not enter your address in your home country, departmental address, or a U.S. Post Office address.
  • Click “Submit” at the bottom of the page and review your update for accuracy on the “View Addresses and Phones” page.

For additional assistance, please review this video. If you continue to experience difficulties in updating your address, please stop by the International Office and we will be happy to help you.

Standard U.S. format when writing your address for other purposes is as follows:

Format Example
Name of Recipient
12345 Street Name
Apartment/Suite Number
City, State ZipCode
Colorado School of Mines
1200 16th Street
Golden, CO 80401


You may also update your address in the International Portal by logging in and updating your profile.

Health Insurance Requirements

All J-1 Exchange Visitors, and their spouses and children who are in the US as J-2 Exchange Visitors, must maintain health insurance for the duration of their stay in the US. The Department of State has issued strict requirements for J-1 and J-2 insurance policies to meet.

These requirements are noted below:

  • Medical benefits of at least $100,000 per accident or illness
  • Coverage for repatriation of remains in the amount of at least $25,000
  • Coverage for expenses related to emergency medical evacuation of the J-1 or J-2 to his or her home country in the amount of $50,000
  • A deductible not to exceed $500 per accident or illness

All accident and insurance policies providing coverage between your program start date and end date must also meet one of the following options:

  1. Underwritten by an insurance corporation having an A.M. Best rating of “A−” or above; a McGraw Hill Financial/Standard & Poor’s Claims-paying Ability rating of “A−” or above; a Weiss Research, Inc. rating of “B + ” or above; a Fitch Ratings, Inc. rating of “A−” or above; a Moody’s Investor Services rating of “A3” or above; or such other rating as the Department of State may from time to time specify
  2. Backed by the full faith and credit of the government of the exchange visitor’s home country
  3. Part of a health benefits program offered on a group basis to employees or enrolled students by a designated sponsor
  4. Offered through or underwritten by a federally qualified Health Maintenance Organization or eligible Competitive Medical Plan as determined by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

The Exchange Visitor is responsible for obtaining an insurance policy that meets these requirements prior to beginning their J-1 program activities.  Visitors in J status are strongly encouraged to enter the US with sufficient accident and sickness insurance to cover any gap between arrival and when the academic semester begins.  Failure to comply with this insurance requirement could result in the loss of legal immigration status. The policy must be maintained for the duration of the J-1 program. If a J-1 extends his/her program beyond the initial program end date, they are required to extend the insurance policy for themselves and any spouses or children, if applicable.

The student health insurance policy provided by Mines covers all of the above regulatory minimums. Supplemental insurance is typically not required.

J-1 Exchange Visitors are not required to have policies that adhere to the requirements of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) unless they have been in the US for 5 or more consecutive years.  This would generally apply to those who have obtained a Change of Status to J-1 after having a previous status for several years.

Request a Replacement DS-2019

The Mines ISSS office has the ability to reprint the form DS-2019, Certificate of Eligibility for various reasons. Ideally, as a J-1 student, you should maintain your J-1 DS-2019 document (and any J-2 DS-2019 documents) in a safe place. You are encouraged to make copies of this document for your records as well.

A new or updated DS-2019 document will be issued to you in the following circumstances:

  • An update has been made to material information contained on the form DS-2019 (i.e name updates, program updates, change of degree level, academic training added, etc.)
  • A new travel signature is needed and the two spaces have already been filled on your prior DS-2019
  • Your DS-2019 was damaged
  • Your DS-2019 was lost
  • Your DS-2019 was stolen

If changes have been made to your SEVIS record and DS-2019 material information, an ISSS advisor will automatically issue the updated DS-2019 and notify you when the document is ready. If you need a travel signature, please review our travel information and visit the International Office to obtain a new document and valid signature.

In the event your I-20 is damaged, lost or stolen, please submit a request through the International Portal for a new I-20 document.

Full-Time Course Enrollment

Full-Time Course Load During Regular Academic Terms

All J-1 degree-seeking and non-degree-seeking students are required to register full-time every fall and spring semester during their programs of study.  Full-time registration is considered to be 12 credits for undergraduates and 9 credits for graduate students.

Graduate thesis students may qualify for reduced registration (4 credits per semester) if your academic enrollment is considered a “full-time equivalent” by the academic department. Please go to Registration Requirements – Reduced Registration How to Qualify to review eligibility.

Summer Sessions

Registration during the summer session is not required unless it will be your first semester of study for your current degree program (this includes students starting at a new academic level which begins in Summer), or your final semester for your degree program.

If you are required to register for full-time in a Summer term because it is your first semester under J-1 status, please see the full-time requirements above.

If you are required to register for full-time in a Summer term because it is your final semester under J-1 status, please review the Full-Time Enrollment Exceptions and Reduced Course Load drop-down below.

Study Abroad

International students who participate in a formal study abroad program through Colorado School of Mines Study Abroad Office can be considered full-time if full-time course enrollment with Mines is maintained for each fall/spring semester and at least 12 credits (undergraduates) or 9 credits (graduate students) will be transferred back to the Mines following the program.  Students should work with the Study Abroad Office prior to the program abroad to ensure courses will transfer back.

Long Distance Education/Online Classes

Online and distance education courses are limited when you are on a J-1 visa. Classes which do not require physical attendance on a campus or in a classroom for courses, exams, or “other purposes integral to completion of the class.” are considered to be online or distance learning courses.

As a J-1 student, no online coursework can be counted towards your full-time enrollment in any semester. If you wish to enroll in an online course, your full-time enrollment must otherwise consist of in-person coursework (e.g. an undergraduate enrolled in 12 credits of in-person coursework is able to enroll in online coursework in addition to the 12 in-person credits, but none of the 12 credit minimum may consist of online coursework).

Full-Time Enrollment Exceptions & Reduced Course Load

In certain situations, J-1 degree-seeking students may qualify to enroll below full-time enrollment.  The reasons are very limited, and generally relate to first-year adjustment and academic situations or serious medical issues.

Reduced Course Load for Academic Reasons

  • First term reasons:
    • (1) initial difficulty with the English language,
    • (2) unfamiliarity with American teaching methods, or
    • (3) initial difficulty with reading requirements, or
    • (4) improper course placement
  • Final term reason:
    • Undergraduate or Graduate degree candidates in their final semester of study who do not have enough required credits remaining for full-time enrollment are eligible to apply for an RCL for Final Term.
      • This option may only be used once per degree level.  Students must graduate in the semester for which they received this approval.

An RCL for First Term Academic Difficulties can be used only once, and students must still take at least 6 semester hours if they have been authorized for this RCL.

Reduced Course Load for Medical Reasons

  • Enrollment below full-time for medical reasons cannot exceed a total of 365 days at any academic level (i.e. you are eligible for 365 days at the undergraduate level, 365 days at the Master’s level, etc.).
  • You must request a new authorization for each new semester with updated support documentation from your medical care provider.
  • If after 365 days of total authorization you are still unable to resume full-time studies, you will need to work with your ISSS advisor to determine the best course of action. Sometimes, an good option is to return home until the medical situation has been resolved and then reapply for admission when you able to resume full-time studies again, or apply to change to another non-immigrant status appropriate for continuing medical treatment in the U.S.

Note: When applying for part-time enrollment authorization, please ensure you are communicating with your academic advisor so they can help to keep your academic program on track. They will be able to help identify courses that are only offered in specific academic terms and help you to map out your remaining course requirements so you may graduate on-time or as close to on-time as possible.

Permission for a Reduced Course Load

To apply for a reduced course load based on an academic reason listed above, please complete the application in the ISSS Portal “Reduced Course Load for F-1 or J-1 Students” under requests.

Once you have completed the application, you will need to request support from your academic adviser through the ISSS Portal. The authorization is automated. It is recommended to meet with your academic advisor prior to submitting the request so they are aware of your situation and can provide additional support.

After your advisor completes the ISSS Portal authorization, ISSS will review the completed request and work with the Mines Registrar to adjust your enrollment if you are approved.

How do I request a Reduced Course Load for a Medical Reason?

  1. Speak with an ISSS advisor for guidance on your specific, unique situation.
  2. Obtain a letter from your U.S. physician (Medical Doctor, Doctor of Osteopathy, or Licensed Clinical Psychologist only).
    1. The letter (typed or legibly written) on the physician’s letterhead which is dated, and signed by the physician.
    2. The letter must indicate that you have a medical condition which prevents you from registering full-time during a specific semester (we do not need specific details on your condition).
    3. The letter should specify the type of enrollment recommended by the doctor (i.e. part-time or no enrollment).
    4. The letter should provide an anticipated date by which you may feasibly be able to return to full-time studies.
  3. Complete “Reduced Course Load for Medical Reason” request on the ISSS Portal.


The ISSS is available for additional guidance and assistance with this process.

Please never hesitate to contact Jordan Gerue(jgerue@mines.edu) or Megan Abbey (meganabbey@mines.edu), call 303-273-3210, or come to walk-in hours Monday through Friday from 9:00am-12:00pm or 1:30pm to 4:00pm.

There are many additional and confidential resources available at the Coulter Student Health Center and the Mines Counseling Center.

Change of Major

While studying at Mines, you may change your Major or degree field. To complete the formal process through the Mines Registrar, please review their website and complete the necessary documentation.

Once completed with the Registrar, your DS-2019 document and SEVIS record will also need to be updated to reflect your new field of study. Please visit the International Office to complete this process.

Change of Level

Upon completion of your degree program and formal graduation, if you will continue on to the next degree level you will need to complete a Change of Level with both the Mines Registrar and ISSS.

Undergraduate students – Please work with the Mines registrar to complete all graduation requirements, as well as your Mines graduate-level department to complete all admissions requirements.

Graduate students – Please consult the Mines Registrar information regarding Change of Level.

While your documentation is pending with your department or the Registrar, you can submit your Change of Level documentation through the International Portal to support the new DS-2019 issuance. The ISSS must receive a formal approval from the Registrar and your Trailhead/Banner record must be updated to indicate you are moving to the next academic level before ISSS can issue an updated DS-2019 document for you.

Change of Level Acceptable Forms of Funding

Personal funds:

  • bank statements in your name showing balance of account (see below for criteria**)

Private sponsors: including parents (must include both of the following):

  • letter(s) indicating the relationship between you and the sponsor(s), the amount of support, the length of support and co-signed by the sponsor
  • the sponsor’s bank or other financial statements (see below for criteria**) issued within the last 6 months

Mines Awards (scholarships, fellowship, grants, on-campus employment, etc):

  • The letter must be:
    • printed on formal Colorado School of Mines letterhead
    • signed by the sponsoring department
    • issued in the last 6 months
    • state the amount, duration and type/source of funding

Other institutional support/award letters:

  • letter from an employer or another institution on formal business letterhead including a signature showing amount and length of support
  • salary statements are not accepted

Loan certificates/letters:

  • must indicate your name and the amount of approved loan
  • conditional loan approvals may be accepted only if the condition is the receipt of your I-20 or DS-2019.
  • pending or un-approved loan applications are not accepted as proof of funding

**Bank/Financial Statement Criteria:

  • should be a single page document showing the criteria below. Please DO NOT submit several months worth of statements.
  • is a single document showing bank/financial statements from multiple accounts is acceptable
  • indicates the financial institution’s name
  • indicates the account holder’s name
  • clearly shows the current or more recent account balance
  • be dated within the past 6 months (older statements will not be accepted),
  • be translated into English (especially names) *unofficial translations are accepted*
  • clearly show the type of currency
  • be from statements that show liquid assets that can be converted to cash
  • be co-signed by a banking official

IMPORTANT: The following types of funding are NOT accepted:

  • Documents older than 6 months
  • Income or salary statements
  • Funds that are not immediately accessible
  • Assets that are not in liquidated form (house, car, retirement, etc)
  • Life insurance policy statements
  • Pension funds
  • Tax return forms or documents
Program Extension

A program extension is the process of obtaining a new DS-2019 with a later end date for J-1 students to extend the authorized period of stay in the United States to complete a degree program.

A program extension is appropriate when a student is unable to complete the original study objective before the expiration date on the current DS-2019 document.  Often this happens due to academic set backs or health problems that may cause course sequencing issues or require a student to apply for a Reduced Course Load during their academic program.

Am I eligible for an extension?

You are eligible for a program extension of your J-1 immigration document if you:

  • Have been enrolled full time throughout your period of studies (or have an approved Reduced Course Load request on file for any applicable semesters),
  • Have otherwise maintained your immigration status, and
  • The additional time is needed to accommodate for delays caused by a compelling academic or medical reason.

You are not eligible for an extension if:

  • You have been dismissed from the university
    • If you have been dismissed, please visit the International Office to discuss your options with an ISSS adviser.
  • You have ever been enrolled less than full-time without an authorized Reduced Course Load request on file with the ISSS.
  • You have completed all requirements of your program of study and are otherwise eligible to apply for a change of level, optional practical training, or transfer to another institution.
  • You have otherwise failed to maintain your immigration status.

When should I apply for an extension?

The best time period to apply for an extension is generally 1-3 months prior to the expiration of your document. All extension applications must be submitted before the end date on the DS-2019 document.

Extensions submitted after this date cannot be considered and you will enter your 30-day grace period. Upon completion of this grace period, you will be required to depart the United States before or on the 30th day.

How do I apply for a program extension?

You will need to submit an online request with supporting financial documentation indicating you have sufficient funds to support yourself through the extended period. Additionally, your academic advisor will need to provide an authorization indicating they support your extension request. You will request their authorization electronically through the ISSS Portal by completing the ISSS portal “Program Extension” Request

Graduation and Program Completion

Graduation is an exciting culmination of all the hard work you have put into your academic degree, research and time at Mines. The Mines Registrar and your academic department can help you navigate the necessary requirements to qualify and apply for graduation. You have several options available to you to maintain your immigration status following the completion of your degree, to include:

  • Begin a new course of study at Colorado School of Mines during the next available semester – please speak with an ISSS advisor if you will change your degree level
  • Transfer to a new school or new program sponsor within the U.S. to start in their next available regular semester or term
  • Apply to change your non-immigrant status
  • Apply for J-1 Academic Training authorization in order to gain practical work experience directly related to the degree or academic program you just completed
    • Eligible to apply during the 90 days before your program end date and no later than the final end date on your DS-2019
      • Applying after your DS-2019 end date has passed is not possible
  • Depart from the U.S. within 30 days

How do I know when I am eligible to graduate?

For most undergraduate degree candidates, information for determining whether or not you’re eligible and how to apply for graduation is available on the Registrar’s website here.

For most graduate degree candidates, information for determining whether or not you’re eligible and how to apply for graduation is available on the Registrar’s website here.

If you will graduate earlier than the date listed on your I-20 or DS-2019 document, please visit the ISSS to discuss your post-graduation options in further detail so we can properly maintain your immigration status.

Graduation Delays

From time to time, things happen that can impact your ability to graduate. The Mines ISSS is here to help you navigate your immigration status to remain in-status for your J-1 visa while you work to complete your degree. Please review the information below regarding graduation and possible delays which can impact your immigration status.

I failed one class and need to retake it before I can officially graduate.

You will need to request an J-1 program extension and work with your academic department to determine when you will be able to retake the course in order to finish your degree. Please also visit the ISSS to discuss your unique situation with an advisor to determine the best course of action.

I have not finished all the required coursework for my degree program, but my DS-2019 is about to expire or I had or have a Reduced Course Load for academic or medical reasons. I need extra time to finish my degree program.

Please review the eligibility information for requesting an J-1 program extension. If you have determined you qualify to apply, please submit your request through the ISSS Portal for review by ISSS.

Everyone’s situation is unique. The ISSS is available to help discuss your options and explore possibilities to help you maintain your immigration status and complete your degree program.

Transfer Out From Mines

Follow the instructions below to request a transfer-out from the Colorado School of Mines to another SEVP-certified institution within the United States. This process is not required if you will be attending your next school in a different country.



To be eligible for a transfer of your J-1 student status, you must apply to another U.S. school and be fully admitted to that school. The school must be SEVP-certified and able to accept your J-1 student record. Before the new school can issue a DS-2019 for you, your SEVIS records needs to be electronically transferred to the new school.  You will retain the same SEVIS number you currently have.

After the transfer of your status occurs, the new school will be able to issue a new DS-2019 for you. Mines ISSS will no longer have access to your immigration record and you will need to work with the new ISSS office for your status maintenance.

Transfer Procedure

To request a transfer out of your J-1 status to another U.S. institution, please submit an online request through the International Portal once you have gathered the following documentation:

  • Formal admission letter from new school you wish to attend – your record cannot be transferred if you have been granted “conditional admission.”
  • Transfer-In Form from new university – this may be electronic. Please confirm with your new university whether they have a form and if yes, how it will be sent to ISSS for completion.

Transfer Release Date

Your new school cannot issue a DS-2019 for you until Colorado School of Mines “releases” your immigration records in SEVIS to the new school.  To do this, we must specify a “release date.” The release date should be “the current semester or session completion date, or the date of expected transfer if earlier than the established academic cycle.”

After your record is released, Mines will no longer be able to access or change your records. You should work with Mines ISSS and your new school’s ISSS to determine the best date to have your SEVIS record transferred electronically.

Please be advised you must start your new academic program and begin classes within five months from the last day you were enrolled at Colorado School of Mines. It is best to speak with an ISSS advisor in order to consider your unique situation.

Canceling the Transfer Release Date

ISSS can cancel or change your transfer plans any time up until the day before your release date.  After the release date arrives, we have no further control over your SEVIS record, and you will then have to work with the new school if you wish to change your plans.  For this reason, you need to remember the transfer release date that we choose during your appointment and request any changes BEFORE that date arrives.

Special Considerations

Students Who Will Graduate From Colorado School of Mines

If you graduate or complete your program of study at Mines, then wish to transfer to a new school, your transfer should be requested during your last semester at Mines and prior to the end date on your current DS-2019. Requests made after the end date cannot be completed as your J-1 SEVIS record will be “Inactive” and you will be in your 30-day grace period.

Initial Status Students 

An initial status student is new J-1 student with an initial SEVIS record.  If you are an initial student who has applied for a visa using your DS-2019 from the Colorado School of Mines, has not yet entered the U.S. to start your program, and who has changed your mind about attending Colorado School of Mines because you want to attend another school, you are strongly advised to apply for an new J-1 visa using the DS-2019 from the school you intend to attend. You are required to enter the United States using the DS-2019 for the school you will attend.

If you are an initial student who has already entered the U.S. using your Mines DS-2019 but have not started your program, and you have decided you want to attend another U.S. school and have received an admission offer, you must first report in person to ISSS with all immigration documents as well as your admission letter for the new school.  You should report no later than the program start date listed on your DS-2019.

Please be advised that in order for our office to release your SEVIS record to the new school, your program start date at the new school must occur no later than 30 days after you enter the U.S. or your program start date at Colorado School of Mines, whichever is earliest. If you are unable to physically report to the Mines ISSS, please email isss@mines.edu for guidance on how to have your record provided to the school you will attend.

Other Issues to Consider

  • If you have not yet completed your program, notify your academic advisor of your intent to leave Colorado School of Mines.
  • If you are a student and are registered for the next term, remember to work with the Registrar, CASA and/or the Graduate School to withdraw your enrollment
  • If you live on-campus, contact the Housing Office to determine your move-out date and obligations. If you live off campus and your lease has not ended, contact your landlord to cancel or sublet your lease and fulfill any move-out obligations.  Remember to cancel services such as gas, electric, water, phone, cable.
  • Check your Mines account for any bills to pay and contact the Controllers Office with questions
  • Submit a “Mail Forwarding” form to the U.S. Post Office to change your mailing address and have mail sent to your new address. The U.S. Post Office cannot forward mail to a non-U.S. address.
Identity Protection and Scams

With the increased use of technology, there are many new types of phishing attempts and scams that are being developed in the world. If you suspect that someone is trying to scam you for money, you are encouraged to report this to the Colorado School of Mines Police Department and the International Office.

Please note, no governmental agency will ever call you. Rarely will a government agency email you unless you have provided explicit authorization to receive information from the U.S. government via electronic sources (email or text). For most communications from the U.S. government, you will receive a written communication mailed to the U.S. mailing address on your J-1 SEVIS record.

Many scammers may have accurate or slightly out-dated information about you to include your full name, phone number, email address, school name, major, home address, and country of origin. This information can easily be found online depending on how many social media platforms or other electronic subscriptions you have. If a scammer is providing this information to you, this does not legitimize that they are being honest.

Some common scams are listed below:

Rental Scams

While there are many legitimate landlords and rental companies in the United States, there are imposters who try to pose as rental agencies and landlords in order to get money out of individuals planning to come to the United States. Often, they will require a wire transfer or money up front with promises to mail the keys and other pertinent information after the money has been received. It is important to be aware of such scams and notice irregularities in communications and the process of applying for an apartment. Learn more about common housing scams and how to avoid them.

IRS and Identity Theft

Please be careful of fraudulent scams and internet “phishing” that use the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) name or other tax-related references to gain access to your personal information in order to commit identity theft. The IRS will send you physically mailed documents. The IRS does not send unsolicited emails or request personal information by email. It also does not request PIN numbers, passwords, or similar private access information to individuals’ credit cards, banks or other financial accounts. You can learn more about scams on the IRS website and report phishing scams to the IRS. Additionally the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) provides a blog about consumer scams and imposter scams.

The IRS has this helpful video to identify imposter scams:


Some scammers will call and leave voicemails indicating that your SSN has been compromised and that, in order to rectify the situation, you will need to pay money. Others will indicate that you are being deported or entered into deportation proceedings. Still others will indicate that you have committed a crime that affects your SSN. The Social Security Administration (SSA) will never call you. They will update your SSA Portal with information or mail you a physical letter if something is needed for your SSN and status. Learn more about scams on the SSA website and from the Office of the Inspector General (OIG).


Occasionally, you may receive an email from an unknown sender with an attachment, or from a known sender with an attachment and no email body or subject-line. If an email looks strange, you do not recognize the sender, or the speech/writing patterns of a known sender are different from usual, do not open any attachment from the email. Some scammers send email attachments that, when opened, download ransomware into your computer. Ransomware locks your computer and threatens to destroy all information until or unless the demanded ransom is paid. The best way to avoid this scenario is to report suspicious emails as “Spam” and separately contact a known sender to verify whether or not they sent you the email. Mines ITS provides more information about phishing and reporting scams on their website.

U.S. Embassy

The U.S. embassy will never contact you via phone. You will receive an email from the U.S. embassy at most. More often, they will contact you in writing via mail. Please review the U.S. embassy website for your home country, as well as the U.S. Department of State website for additional information about reporting scammers posing as U.S. embassy officials.

Golden Police

If you receive a call from an individual indicating they are with the Golden Police Department, ask for credential information. Write down the individual’s name and badge number to verify the person truly is an officer with GPD. GPD will never call you to threaten to arrest you or fine you. You will receive communication with GPD via regular mail or, if they need to get in contact with you, they will often contact the School of Mines to assist in locating you.


Some scammers pose as the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency and threaten to deport you or arrive to your home, place of work, school or other location to apprehend you. U.S. DHS ICE will never call you. Review the USCIS Scam information online to protect yourself.

Top Tips for Avoiding Scams

  • Ask for credentials (badge ID, employee number, first and last name) of anyone posing as a government official
  • Take notes during the call and ask questions – scammers often have a set script and are not prepared for improvisation when you want details of what they’re claiming you did
  • Avoid any contact where they are asking for payments in gift cards, personal check or via Western Union – do not pay! Contact Mines Police and file a report.
  • Be leery of opportunities that seem “too good to be true” – they usually are! Do your research prior to committing to anything involving money.
  • Do not open email attachments from unknown senders.
  • Be cognizant of poor grammar, incorrect sentence structures and email attachments when you know the sender.
  • Notice if the information they provide you about yourself is partially correct or incorrect – they usually have outdated information available, but enough to make them seem legitimate.
  • If you feel like something is not right, it probably is not right. Contact the Mines Police Department and the International Office for guidance.

The information contained in this web site is provided as a service to the international students, faculty, staff, employees and administrators of the Colorado School of Mines, and does not constitute legal advice on any immigration, tax or any other matter. We aim to provide substantial and useful information, but we make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or sufficiency of the information contained in or linked from this web site or any external/associated site. As legal advice must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case, and laws are constantly changing, nothing provided herein should be used as a substitute for the advice of competent counsel. Neither the Colorado School of Mines nor the Office of Global Education is responsible for any errors or omissions contained in this website, or for the results obtained from the use of this information.


International Student & Scholar Services
924 16th Street
Green Center, Suite 219
Colorado School of Mines
Golden, CO 80401

Office Hours
Monday through Friday, 9:00a – 12:00p and 1:30p – 4:00p

Main Office Phone and Email
(303) 273-3210 / isss@mines.edu