College of the
International Students

College of the Redwoods
International Student Program

Immigration Documentation & Terms

Make photocopies of your passport and official acceptance document and keep in an accessible place separate from the originals. Keep your original documents in a safe place.


The expiration date in your passport should always be valid at least 6 months into the future. To extend your passport expiration date, please contact your country's nearest consulate or embassy or come to the International Student Office for the address.


This is the stamp put in your passport by the United States consul in your home country. You need this visa only to ENTER the U.S. The date on the visa shows the latest date you can enter the United States, not how long you can stay here. If it is expired, OR if you change your visa status while in the United States, you must reapply for a new visa only if you plan to leave the United States and re-enter. IT IS NOT NECESSARY TO EXTEND YOUR VISA IF YOU ARE NOT PLANNING A TRIP OUTSIDE THE U.S.


This is your Arrival/Departure Record. It is the small white paper usually stapled to the page next to your visa stamp in your passport. The date written on the lower right-hand corner is the date you must leave the United States. Duration of Status (D/S) is the notation on the I-94. This means that you can legally remain in the United States until you finish your degree program.

Official Acceptance Document:

When you entered the U.S., page 3-4 of your official acceptance document was returned to you by the immigration inspector at your port of entry. This form (or a copy) should be kept with you at all times and NOT be given up when you leave the U.S. after a temporary absence. All records of school transfers, work permission, etc. will be recorded on this form. The official acceptance document ID will also have an 11-digit admission number which will be permanently assigned to you. This admission number must be used in all correspondence and transactions with USCIS.


Duration of Status or the period which the student is pursuing a full course of study. This notation is stamped on both the I-94 and the I-20 by the Immigration Officer at the time of admission into the U.S.


United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) was created as a separate bureau by the Homeland Security Act of 2002, USCIS handles the administration of benefits and immigration services for applicants by exclusively focusing on immigration & citizenship services.


The Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) is a web-based system for maintaining information on international students and exchange visitors in the United States.