F-1 / J-1 Student Overview

Visa and Immigration Services assists incoming and current international students with their immigration status and visa matters.

  • Students given a Form I-20 upon admission to Stony Brook are studying in the U.S. on F-1 status. F-1 is the most common status used by students in the U.S. 
  • Students given a Form DS2019 upon admission to Stony Brook University are studying in the U.S. on J-1 status. The J-1 visa is generally used for students in specific educational exchange programs.


F-1 Student

J-1 Exchange Visitor: Student Category


Form I-20

Form DS-2019 with every activity site listed

Grace Period:

60 day grace period for departure after program completion

30 day grace period for departure after program completion


F-2 dependent spouse cannot study or work

F-2 dependent child cannot work, but may attend K-12 school

J-2 dependent (spouse or child) can study or apply for work authorization. 

Off Campus Employment:

OPT (Must be approved by USCIS 12 months +17 months for STEM), CPT, Internship with international organization, Severe Economic Hardship (must be approved by USCIS)

Academic Training and Economic Hardship must be approved in advance by A/RO (primarily degree seeking students)

On Campus Employment:

DSO must authorize

A/RO authorization letter required in advance for every job, every term

Governing Agency:

Department of Homeland Security regulations

Department of Homeland Security & Department of State regulations


*J-1 visa may be required if receiving government funding.