Extending to Begin a New Program (F & J Students)
To receive a new COE you must be:
- in lawful F-1 or J-1 status under Columbia's SEVIS supervision.
- a J-1 extension is typically a change to a higher level of education in the same field of study. It must be consistent with your original academic objective.
- admitted to a new full-time program of study at Columbia or continuing in the same program at a different degree level
- This may be directly after completing an academic program or from being on OPT after that program
Before You Apply
Earliest Date to Apply for F-1 and J-1 Students: As soon as you are accepted to your new full-time program at Columbia.
Latest date to apply
F-1 : No later than 50 days after your current program completion (to allow time for 60-day deadline)
J-1 Students: Before your current DS-2019 expires.
How to Apply
Gather your documents and information
- Your admission letter (electronic copy accepted)
- Financial Certification Form
- Keep in mind that this should cover the tuition, fees and living expenses for the first academic year of the new program. Refer to our Estimated Expenses by School of Admission. Save the form and edit from your computer. Do not edit in a website browser or you will lose all your data. If you have dependents include them in your application.
- Funding Documents as listed on your Financial Certification Form
- Print-out of your most recent I-94 arrival/departure record
Login to Compass with your UNI and password to submit your application
Please click the appropriate link below:
We will contact you
Allow up to 10 business days for us to review and process your application. We will notify you by email when your new extended I-20 or DS-2019 is ready to be picked up or shipped.
Review, sign, and date your new I-20/DS-2019
F-1 Students: Your new I-20 start date will be the first date of the new program.
J-1 Students: Your new DS-2019 will begin the day after the current DS-2019 expires.
Use your new COE to travel, but keep all previous forms. The travel signature is valid for 12 months or until the end of your I-20/DS-2019, whichever is earlier.
Travel while you are in between programs
As long as you have completed the steps above, you can re-enter the U.S. at any time. This is because:
- you will keep the same SEVIS number and are considered a continuing student
- you are considered legally present in the U.S. in F/J status between the two programs
You may continue to use an unexpired F/J entry visa.
If your visa has expired, the new I-20/DS-2019 establishes the continued validity of your F/J status while you remain in the U.S., but the first time you travel outside the U.S. (except to Canada or Mexico), you will need to apply for a new F/J visa at a U.S. embassy or consulate.
You do not need to pay another SEVIS fee because it is the same SEVIS record.