Immigration Advising

North Seattle College is authorized under Federal law to enroll nonimmigrant alien students. 

As an international student on non-immigrant visa status, it is your responsibility to follow the appropriate regulations during your stay in the U.S. If you fail to comply with these regulations, you will be "out of status."  

Being out of status means you are no longer eligible for on-campus employment, re-entry to the U.S., or any other benefits of F-1 status. Please attend orientation. If you have questions or concerns about any immigration matters, the International Programs staff will be happy to help.

  • The following are considered violations of your F-1 status:
  • Failure to report to North's initial registration in SEVIS upon arrival

  • Failure to maintain full-time registration with a minimum of 12 credits/quarter

  • Failure to apply for a Program Extension if you need more time to complete your current program

  • Failure to obtain a new I-20 if you change your major

  • Failure to report address change to the IP office within 10 days of moving

  • Illegal employment


If you are out of status, please see an advisor about Re-entry and Reinstatement.

Overview on OPT

Optional Practical Training (OPT) provides F-1 students with an opportunity for hands-on work experience (work authorization) related to their academic field of study. Post-Completion OPT begins after Graduation and completion of your Associate or Bachelor’s degree. The regulations allow only twelve (12) months total of full-time OPT which may be completed within a 14-month period following completion of studies. If you have participated in Curricular Practical Training please see an International Programs Advisor before applying for OPT.

Students are eligible for 12 months of full-time OPT per academic level. For example, you may apply for 12 months of OPT after completing an Associate degree and then another 12 months after completing a Bachelor’s degree.

You are eligible to apply for Post-Completion OPT if you meet the following criteria:

  • • You are currently in F-1 status.
  • • You have been enrolled in a full course of study for one academic year (three quarters) or will complete one academic year by the date the OPT approval begins.
  • • Graduation/ Degree Audit done through Academic Advising

Students that are interested in OPT should attend an OPT workshop held at the beginning of each quarter. If you are unable to attend these workshops, please schedule an appointment with an IP advisor.

How to Apply

You may submit your application to USCIS as early as 90 days before your program end date and up to 60 days after your program end date.

1.)  Apply for graduation with an Academic Advisor- request a copy of your graduation application and degree audit

2.)  Complete the OPT Request Form

3.)  Download and complete the I-765 form along with the instructions.  

4.)  Photocopy of all previously issued I-20s

5.)  Photocopy of passport and F-1 visa page

6.)  2 passport photos as specified on page 12 under “Required Documentation”

          a.    Lightly print your name and SEVIS# with a pencil on the back of the photos

7.)  Check or money order for $410 payable to “Department of Homeland Security”

8.)  Copy of I-94 card or electronic I-94   

If applicable, photocopy of USCIS Notice of Action if you applied for change of status.

Once you have all of our completed documents, make an appointment with an IP advisor by contacting IP Office by email or call 206-934-3672.

Overview on CPT (Curricular Practical Training)

CPT allows F-1 students to legally engage in an off-campus internship while receiving credits that count toward completion of their program of study. CPT is only approved for programs in which it is a requirement for a degree. Students must make an appointment with an IP advisor to determine CPT eligibility. CPT is granted on a quarterly basis and must be renewed quarterly. Student must also register for CWE class.   


The re-entry process is for students who have been "terminated"or are otherwise "out of status" and have met with an International Programs advisor to discuss their options.

Note: You must have a valid United States F-1 visa to complete this process.

1. Bring an original bank statement to the International Programs office. It must be less than six months old and in the amount of at least the following.

          - IEP: $23,377 USD

          - College-level: $23,833 USD

          - BAS: $32,871 USD

2. Meet with an International Programs advisor to be issued a new I-20. (This may take 1-3 days.) The advisor will also write you a letter to verify that you are eligible to continue your studies at North.

3. Pay the I-901 fee ($350 USD) for your new SEVIS number through this website.

4. Plan a trip abroad – to Canada, your home country, or anywhere outside the United States.

5. Documents to bring with you: 

  • Passport with valid U.S. F-1 visa

  • Canadian visa, if you are going to re-enter through Canada and need a visa

  • New I-20 with your signature and the IP advisor signature

  • Letter of enrollment

  • Current bank statement

  • Copies of transcripts

  • Current schedule or schedule for the upcoming quarter if available

  • All old I-20s


6. Take your trip abroad to process your new entry to the United States. (If you are traveling by airplane to your home country, make sure that the airline representative or immigration officer takes your I-94 card and stamps your passport.)

7. When you return to the United States, be sure to talk to an immigration officer and have your new entry processed. If entering from Canada, you may need to park your car, go inside and speak with an immigration officer. The officer should scan and stamp your I-20.

8. You must come back to the IP office with your stamped I-20 and other documents! Meet with your IP advisor to have copies made of your immigration documents so your re-entry will be completed.


USCIS website for reinstatement paperwork

Reentry is the preferred method for fixing a student’s status.

North Seattle College will only conduct reinstatement in special circumstances.

Students who choose to do reinstatement will do so on their own or need to obtain legal assistance.