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Transferring to SBU

International students who are admitted to Stony Brook University from another U.S. college, university, high school or language program in F-1 status may need a SEVIS Transfer.  This is the process of moving your SEVIS record from your current school to a new school, after you are admitted. Admission to a new school alone does not automatically allow an F-1 student to begin studies at another school. A SEVIS Transfer, if eligible, has several benefits:

  • You do not pay the SEVIS I-901 fee again
  • You can remain in the U.S. in between programs (if there is less than 5 months between the end of your current program and the start of your new program, more details below.)
  • You maintain the same SEVIS ID number
  • If your F-1 visa is still valid, you can continue to use it until its expiration date.  It is OK if your old school's name is on your visa.
  • You may travel in between programs and are not subject to the 30-day entry restriction (entering no earlier than 30 days before your program starts).

Eligibility Requirements

  • You must be maintaining F-1 status
  • You must have an offer of admission from SBU
  • If you already graduated or completed OPT, you must request the SEVIS transfer within your 60-day grace period
  • The start of classes at SBU must be within 5 months of one of the following:
    • Academic program completion at your prior institution;
    • Last day of enrollment at your prior institution;
    • OPT authorization end date (end date on EAD)
    • For students who are transferring before the end of their OPT, the start of classes must be within 5 months of the requested SEVIS I-20 transfer/release date
    • Students in J-1 status can only transfer to Stony Brook if they will continue to pursue the same program objective.

If the period of time between F-1 activities is longer than 5 months, your SEVIS record is not eligible for transfer. You must receive a new initial I-20 with a new SEVIS number.

Transfer-In Process

Step 1: Speak to your current school about your plans to enroll at SBU
Step 2: Request your new I-20/DS-2019
Step 3: Submit the SEVIS Record Transfer Information form
Step 4: Receive your I-20/DS-2019 from Stony Brook
Step 5: Complete the New Student Check-in and Orientation process

Important Note: Students who leave the United States between transfers must use Stony Brook University’s I-20 when arriving for inspection at the port-of-entry. Please keep all previous I-20s for Intake procedures.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I travel outside of the U.S. in between programs after my transfer-out date?
Do I need a new F-1 visa?
What should my transfer release date be?
Am I still eligible for OPT at my previous school after the transfer-out date?
How does my SEVIS transfer affect my on-campus employment eligibility?
Does my time in F-1 status at my previous institution count towards the one full academic year provision for employment and practical training?
When will I get my I-20 from Stony Brook?
Why does my I-20 say 'Transfer Pending'?