J-1 students who wish to transfer out should speak with an ISSS Advisor.
Whether you attend the Atlanta or the Perimeter campus, please find an advisor under the Contact Us section below.
Valid Travel Signature Requirement
International students must have a valid travel signature on their immigration Form DS-2019 to re-enter the United States. Immigration forms may only be signed by an approved Designated School Official (DSO) or Responsible Officer (RO) in ISSS. Academic advisors and faculty members may not sign immigration documents.
How Long is a Travel Signature Valid?
Where is the Travel Signature?
How do I get my Travel Signature updated?
- Log into iStart
- If you are unfamiliar with iStart, see the “Welcome to iStart” webpage and video
- Click on “J-1 Student Services,” then “Travel Signature Request.”
- Your ISSS advisor will review your e-form and email you, once approved.
- Then, bring your current DS-2019 to ISSS for immediate signature at the front desk.
- The normal processing time is 3-5 business days.
- Know Your Rights at the Port of Entry: The American Civil Liberties Union publishes a helpful pamphlet called “Know Your Rights,” which contains information about your rights in case you come into contact with law enforcement at the airport or other ports of entry to the U.S. We encourage you to review this information, especially before international travel into the U.S. It contains useful questions and answers, and a list of other resources and referral contacts should you ever need them.
- Grace Period: If you are in a post-completion grace period, and you depart the U.S for any reason, such as a cruise, the grace period automatically ends. You cannot re-enter the U.S.
- 5 Month Rule: For students who are continuing their program by conducting research outside of the U.S., please note that you must obtain documentation from your department prior to departing the country that explains your stay outside the U.S for this time period. You are required to visit the ISSS office before you depart.
- Forgot your Immigration Form: If you arrive back in the U.S. without your DS-2019, you will not be allowed immediate entry. You will go to secondary inspection (a waiting area for further questioning that can take several hours), or possibly be refused entry to the U.S.
- Questions or Concerns: Please contact your international advisor if you have questions or concerns before traveling.
ISSS is committed to maintaining support and services to you during this time and will continue to operate under normal operating procedures for the remainder of the semester, just from a remote and online platform. This means you can call us directly or email us to request information and/or telephone/web appointments for advisement during our regular advisement hours.