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Transfer-In Students

Students who are admitted to Stony Brook University from another U.S. college, university, high school or language program on F-1 status are considered “transfers”. This refers to the transfer of the student’s SEVIS record from one institution to another. Students in J-1 status can only transfer to Stony Brook if they will continue to pursue the same program objective.

You are eligible to transfer to Stony Brook University if you:
  1. Are maintaining lawful F-1/J-1 status,
  2. Meet all academic requirements for admission and
  3. Submit documentation necessary for the issuance of an I-20/DS-2019.

Please Note: Your course of study at Stony Brook must begin during the next available term, or within 5 months of the end of your course of study/OPT participation at your transfer-out school, whichever is earlier.  Because each student's case may differ, contact Visa and Immigration Services for additional guidance.

Transfer-In Process
Step 1:

Once you’ve applied to SBU, login to accessVIS and submit all required forms in the Request a Form I-20/DS-2019 tab. You also must submit the International Student Transfer Report on the SEVIS Transfer tab.

Step 2:

Upon admission to SBU, inform your current/previous International Student Advisor you plan to transfer. We will contact him/her to release your SEVIS record to Stony Brook University. Stony Brook cannot issue you an I-20/DS-2019 until your SEVIS record is released.

Step 3:

Stony Brook will issue you a Transfer-Pending I-20/DS-2019.

Step 4:

Complete the Immigration Intake procedures in accessVIS and attend the New International Student Orientation.

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-20 for Intake procedures.


Frequently Asked Questions:

Can I travel outside of the U.S.?

Yes, you can. If you plan to travel abroad after completing your studies at your previous institution but before starting your program at Stony Brook University, you must re-enter the U.S. with:

  • Form I-20 issued by Stony Brook University
  • Valid Visa
  • Valid Passport

Students with a "Transfer Pending" I-20 may return to the U.S. at any time before the program start date on the transfer I-20. You are considered to be a returning student and not a new student with an initial I-20, who is limited to entering the U.S. within a 30-day window before the I-20 program start date.

Be sure to use your Stony Brook issued I-20 at the port of entry. 

Do I need a new F-1 visa?

If you have a valid, unexpired visa in your passport, you do not need to apply for a new visa. You may use the visa you have, even though the previous school's name is on it.

If you have an expired visa and are traveling outside of the U.S., you will need to apply for a new visa (but you are not required to pay the SEVIS fee again).

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