SEVIS is the acronym for Student Exchange Visitor
Information System. Simply stated, SEVIS is an online tracking system
for international students (F-1, J-1 and M-1 visa holders) and their
dependants (F-2, J-2 and M-2 visa holders). SEVIS became operational
in July of 2002. Through SEVIS, colleges and universities enter and
update various data regarding the international students who have been
issued Form 1-20s by their institutions.
What this means to you is that vital information
about you and your F-1 Status will be updated regularly on the SEVIS
database. This includes but is not limited to change of address, change
of name, change of major, dropping below full-time enrollment, practical
training, illegal employment and non-enrollment. These and other occurrences
are considered "reportable events" and Hudson Valley is
mandated to report these events.
The United States Citizen and Immigration Services (USCIS)
has complete access to your information via SEVIS. Additionally, an
USCIS officer will receive a notice via e-mail and/or an alert anytime
a significant change is made to your SEVIS records. Additionally, Hudson
Valley will receive notices and/or alerts from the USCIS via e-mail regarding
significant events (i.e. your re-entrance into the United States, upcoming
I-20 expiration, upcoming visa expiration, etc.). This will assist
you in properly maintaining your F-1 status.
It is important to note that while SEVIS is operational
at this time, there are still some "bugs" in the system that
need to be worked out. Because of this, there is still some "grey
area" regarding how processes that were previously done using
all paper will be carried out using SEVIS. Be patient. To quote one
USCIS officer when discussing SEVIS, "it's a work in progress."