ICE/SEVP Rescind Fall 2020 Enrollment Message

Updated: July 24, 2020 at 4:32 PM

Dear F-1 Students:

The ICE/SEVP broadcast message and FAQ documents released on July 6-7 were rescinded by the U.S. government on July 14th. Chancellor Blank released a statement that afternoon. 

We received a clarification message from SEVP on July 24, 2020 which clarifies guidance from March 9 and March 13 which temporarily allowed F-1 international students to enroll only in remote credits and maintain lawful F-1 status. This message informs ISS guidance for fall 2020. 

Continuing students with a Continued Attendance I-20/Active SEVIS record, you have two options *: 

  1. Enroll full-time or have an approved ISS Reduced Course Load (RCL) 
    1. You can maintain your F-1 immigration status inside or outside the U.S. 
    2. You can enroll only in remote/online credits. There is no immigration requirement for in-person enrollment. 
  2. Take a gap semester or year 
    1. Discuss this option with your academic advisor or graduate program coordinator first. 
    2. You must be outside the U.S. 
    3. You may need to apply for re-entry admission to UW-Madison  
    4. Your F-1 immigration record cannot remain active during your leave of absence. You must complete the ISS Leave of Absence form in your Terra Dotta portal. 

New students with an Initial Attendance I-20/SEVIS record, you have three options: 

  1. Enroll in in-person credits 
    1. The U.S. consulate and Customs and Border Protection (CBP) will review your eligibility for an F-1 visa and entry to the U.S. as an F-1 student. You will need proof of in-person enrollment. 
  2. Enroll in remote/online credits 
    1. Remain outside the U.S. 
    2. Request an I-20 program start date deferral from the Designated School Official who issued your I-20 (page 1). Your start date can be deferred to Spring 2021 or later when you intend to be on campus for in-person instruction. 
  3. Change your semester of admission and do not enroll for Fall 2020 
    1. You must reapply for admission. 
    2. Your I-20 program start date can only be updated if your term of admission is updated. Your I-20 program start date must match the start date of your term of admission.  

Please complete your Fall 2020 Enrollment Plan by July 17th. This information is used for academic planning purposes as departments finalize course section plans the week of July 20th. We appreciate your cooperation.  

We celebrate this welcome news and we remain diligent in advocating for our international students to safely pursue their academic pursuits at UW-Madison. 

In support, 

International Student Services 

* Change of level students are considered continuing students. Transfer-pending students inside the United States are also continuing students. Transfer-pending students outside the United States are considered to be new students with an initial attendance I-20/SEVIS record.