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Office of International Education
Updating and Extending Your DS-2019

Requesting a New/Updated DS-2019

Please use the DS-2019 Update/ Request Form to request a new DS-2019 for the following reasons:

  • to replace your lost document;
  • to update your financial information (e.g., change in source of funding, applying for a new visa);
  • for inclusion in your application to change to J-1 student status; or
  • to change your level of study to a higher level (e.g., (MS to PhD).

If you would like to add a dependent spouse and/or child to your J-1 SEVIS record in order to obtain a dependent DS-2019 for the J-2 visa application process, please follow the process indicated on the Bringing a Dependent web page.

If you need to apply for DS-2019 extension, please follow the process indicated on the Extension of DS-2019 Program End Date web page.

To Request a New/ Updated DS-2019:

  • Complete the DS-2019 Update/ Request Form including the Financial Worksheet (pg. 2)
  • Submit the following paperwork to the Office of International Education:
    • Completed DS-2019 Update/Request Form
      • Proof of financial support until the end of your program. Acceptable proof includes:
        • Current personal/family bank statement or available balance page of your online account information;
        • Assistantship letter, scholarship letter, or fellowship letter; and/or
        • Notarized letter from a sponsor (relative or third party) and sponsor’s financial bank statement
    • Photocopies of your passport, visa, I-94, and DS-2019s
    • Proof of health insurance and medical evacuation and repatriation coverage (e.g., photocopy of insurance card or policy details)
    • Enrollment Certification showing full-time status for every semester enrolled at ESF (available at the Registrar’s Office)
    • If applicable, a photocopy of approved Petition to the Faculty (e.g., change of program or program level requests)

The Office of International Education will e-mail you upon issuance of your new DS-2019 within two weeks of the receipt of your request.

DS-2019 Program End Date

If you are in J-1 status, your DS-2019 indicates the program completion date of your SEVIS record. If you will not complete your academic program by that program end date, you must apply for an extension of your DS-2019 end date before your document expires.  You may lose your lawful J-1 status and all associated benefits if you: (1) fail to apply for an extension before your DS-2019 expires even if you have a valid reason for extension; OR (2) you apply for an extension but do not meet the requirements for an extension.

PLEASE NOTE: The Office of International Education will not process extensions for students conducting research outside of the U.S., since this does not support the purpose of the J-1 exchange visitor program, which is to promote educational and cultural exchange.

Eligibility for a DS-2019 Extension

Immigration regulations limit the circumstances for which international students may be granted a program extension. Federal Immigration regulations provide that you may be eligible for an extension if: (1) you have continually maintained full-time J-1 status AND (2) if you have compelling academic or medical reasons which resulted in a delay in your program completion. 8 CFR sec. 214.2(f)(7)(iii).

Examples of acceptable/compelling reasons for program extension are:

  • Changes in major/research topic;
  • Unexpected research difficulties;
  • Lost credits upon transfer into Syracuse University; or
  • Documented illness

The following are examples of unacceptable reasons for program extension:

  • Repeat of course(s) due to unsatisfactory grade;
  • Defend thesis;
  • Additional time to complete “incomplete” course(s);
  • Failure to work closely or consult with academic advisor;
  • Delay of coursework to participate in work experience (AT) not required for your degree;
  • Participation in AT when all coursework is complete; or
  • Delay caused by academic probation or suspension.

Procedure for Requesting a DS-2019 Extension

Please plan ahead and allow at least two weeks for your request to be processed.

  1. Complete Part I of the DS-2019 Extension Request Form and the Financial Worksheet (page 2).
  2. Attach photocopies of the following documents for you (and your dependents):
    • Proof of financial support equivalent to estimated expenses for the extension period as calculated on the Financial Worksheet
      • Acceptable financial documentation includes: current personal bank statement or available balance page of your online account information; assistantship letter; tuition scholarship letter; stipend letter; fellowship letter; and a notarized letter from a sponsor (relative or third-party) indicating their funding commitment to your education along with sponsor’s current bank statement.
    • Enrollment Certification (from the Office of the Registrar's Office) to verify full-time enrollment throughout your program.
    • Passport bio and expiration date page, visa, and I-94
    • All DS-2019s--page 1 only and authorization letter for any academic trainings if applicable
    • Proof of current and continuous health insurance that meets Department of State’s minimum requirements (such as copy of SUNY insurance card)
  3. Have your Academic Advisor’s complete Part II of the DS-2019 Extension Request Form and sign.
  4. Submit DS-2019 Extension Request Form with Financial Worksheet and required photocopies to the Office of Instruction and Graduate Studies (227 Bray Hall) to obtain the Dean's signature.
  5. Upon review, the Dean will forward your completed request to the Office of International Education. You will be notified via email whether your extension request was approved or denied. If your request was approved, an extended DS-2019 will be issued and available for pick-up at the Office of International Education.

If you are DS-2019 was not issued by SUNY-ESF, please consult with your sponsor (e.g., IIE, Fulbright) to obtain information about their extension process.