Before You Enter the United States
Visa Stamp (Visa Foil)
When your passport(s) is returned to you from the U.S. consulate, verify that you have the correct visa stamp. The F-1 or J-1 visa stamp is for a student and the J-2 or F-2 stamp is for a dependent. The visa stamps cannot be corrected at the port of entry or after you enter the United States. If you enter in the wrong visa category, it will affect your academic program as well as delay any funding you may receive from Duke University.
Note: New students ARE NOT PERMITTED to enter the country earlier than 30 days prior to the program start date recorded on the I-20 or DS-2019.
After You Enter the United States
Form I-94 Automation (Formally Form I-94)
Verify that you entered the U.S. under the correct visa category by checking the Customs and Border Protection's Arrival/Departure Forms: I-94 and I-94W webpage. Print this information and present it to the Duke Visa Services Office when you report for the required registration or during one of the Mass Registrations.
Immigration regulations require all students/scholars in F-1 and J-1 status to register with the host institution. Duke requires that all other new international students in different visa classes register as well.
F-1/J-1 Students: Please refer to the information at: https://visaservices.duke.edu/about/appointments
J-1 Researchers/Professors/Short-term Scholars/Specialists: Scholars should contact their Duke Visa Services advisors to schedule a registration appointment. This registration is required by the Dept of State’s Exchange Visitor Program. During this registration, your visa documents will be reviewed and your arrival at Duke will be reported directly to The Exchange Visitor Program.
J-1 Researchers/Professors/Short-term Scholars/Specialists bring the following information for the registration appointment:
- Visa document: DS-2019.
- Passport containing visa stamp. Canadians do not need visa stamps.
- Form I-94. Printout of information from Customs and Border Protection's Arrival/Departure Forms: I-94 and I-94W webpage confirming your entry, or the small white card you received at the land port-of-entry, probably stapled to your passport.
The registration process will allow you to:
- Notify the United States Department of Homeland Security that you have arrived at Duke. Failure to register by the first day of class may render you out of valid F-1 or J-1 status.
- Begin the process to obtain a United States driver’s license. Do not apply until after you have registered—it will delay the process.
- Apply for a Social Security or Individual Tax Identification number (if eligible). Do not apply until after you have registered—it will delay the process.
- Obtain necessary payroll documents (if applicable). Do not apply until after you have registered—it will delay the process.
Students can bring their passports to our office 9:00am to 4:30pm Monday through Friday.