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Extending Your Stay

J-1 scholars are expected to complete their program within the dates listed on their DS-2019 document. It is important that you and your department host formulate your program plan accordingly. It is also important that you continue to be engaged in your program throughout your stay.

Am I eligible for a Program Extension?

  • I am applying for an extension BEFORE the current end date listed on my DS-2019 document.
  • I have maintained my J-1 status (including making normal progress in my program).
  • I have a compelling professional, research, or medical related reason for requesting an extension to my program.

It is up to ISSS to determine if you are eligible for a program extension. Extensions are only allowed under specific circumstances and for compelling professional or medical reasons. An extension cannot be granted based on delays caused by inactivity. Some examples of compelling reasons for a program extension are listed below:

  • Unexpected research delays
  • Extension of teaching contract
  • Documented illness (doctor's note required)

How do I request a Program Extension?

You should apply for an extension at least 2 weeks before the completion date listed on your DS-2019 document to allow for adequate time for ISSS to process the extension in SEVIS. If you do not apply before the program end date listed on your DS-2019 document, you will no longer be eligible for an extension.

STEP 1: Scholar logs in to the ISSS Portal. You will login using special credentials specifically for the ISSS Portal (DO NOT login using Central Login). If you have forgotten your password, please click on "Forgot your password?" at the bottom of the page.

STEP 2: Scholar uploads the most recent versions of the following documents (NOTE: If the most recent versions of these documents have already been uploaded to your ISSS Portal, you can skip this step):

  • Passport
  • Visa
  • I-94 Printout
  • Dependent documents (if applicable)

STEP 3: Scholar provides host department with the following documentation:

  • Additional proof of funding documentation for the requested extension period
    • You must provide documentation to cover the entire cost for the remainder of your program.
    • All documentation must be dated within the last six months.
    • Your specific personal situation cannot be taken into account when determining the amount of expenses.
    • Examples of acceptable documents include: an official personal bank statement, letter on bank stationary signed and dated by a bank official, or an ISU employment contract listing salary.
    • Scanned copies of originals are accepted.
  • Proof of Insurance for yourself and any dependents showing coverage through the requested extension period

STEP 4: Host department initiates the program extension request :

  • Host department logs in to the ISSS Scholar Portal. Click on "ISU Sponsoring Departments" and login via Central Login.
  • If you need assistance logging in to the ISSS Scholar Portal, please email
  • Navigate to the scholar's profile and submit an extension request found on the Requests tab.
  • Upload documentation from scholar (listed in STEP 3 above)

STEP 5: Host Department notifies ISSS that the extension request has been submitted by emailing Your application will be reviewed. If approved, you will be issued a new DS-2019 document. You will receive an email when your new DS-2019 is ready. Please allow 10 business days processing time.

Scholars working on campus need to bring a copy of their extended DS-2019 to Human Resources to update their Form I-9.