If an F-1 student is unable to complete his or her studies at Pace University by the completion date on the Form I-20, he or she must file for a “program extension.” This must be done prior to the completion date on the Form I-20. It is recommended that you allow at least two weeks processing time to complete this procedure. Students must submit new financial documentation and complete certain paperwork at the International Students & Scholars Office. All extensions must be completed before the current I-20 expires.
Students in J-1 visa status must apply for an extension of stay if planning to remain in the U.S. beyond the date specified in section 3 of the Form DS-2019. If Pace University is your J-1 sponsor, as indicated in section 2 of the Form DS-2019, you will need to request a new Form DS-2019 from the International Students & Scholars Office.
In general, extensions can be granted if the J-1 has not exceeded the normal time limits for a particular program. Students must submit new financial documentation and a letter of explanation from the academic advisor for a new DS-2019 to be issued. If you were properly admitted with the notation "D/S," it will not be necessary to submit paperwork to USCIS in order to extend your stay. Program sponsors are permitted to extend a participant's program by updating the Exchange Visitor’s SEVIS record and issuing a new Form DS-2019 with the new ending date.
If your Form DS-2019 was issued by another sponsoring agency (such as Fulbright, Rotary, USAID, AmidEast, Hariri Foundation, LASPAU, or the United Nations), you must contact your program officer (the Institute of International Education or IIE, in many cases) for information about an extension of stay. They must issue your new Form DS-2019 and may have additional requirements. Many J-1 program sponsors only issue the DS-2019 for one year at a time. You should also expect this to take much more time than if Pace is your sponsor, so plan ahead!