Update on SEVP Message Released on July 14, 2020 for International Students

We write you today to share a very positive update for all of our international students. As you well know, last week Harvard and MIT filed a complaint against the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) seeking declaratory and injunctive relief from the July 6 SEVP Broadcast Message. Purdue, along with many other higher education institutions, supported this complaint by joining various amicus briefs.

The presiding judge heard the case today and announced that the parties in the case had entered into a mutual agreement to rescind the July 6th SEVP Broadcast Message and the July 7th SEVP FAQs and to revert back to the March, 2020 SEVP guidance. Following is what this decision means for Purdue’s international students:

International Students Physically Located within the United States for Fall 2020

  1. There is no limit to the number of online courses that an international student can enroll in for the Fall 2020 semester;
  2. A new I-20 is not required;
  3. International students will not need to exit the US if Purdue is forced to convert to an all online course delivery format during the fall 2020 semester.

Continuing International Students who were enrolled in the Spring 2020 semester and Who are Physically Located outside the United States for Fall 2020

As per the March 2020 guidance, and to the best of our knowledge, information, and belief:

  1. Students with valid visas planning to return to Purdue for the fall semester will not need a new I-20 to re-enter the US as outlined in the July 2020 SEVP guidance;
  2. Full-time online enrollment while abroad will lead to the ability to maintain an Active SEVIS record;
  3. Students will not be subject to the 5 month rule and potentially forfeit their visa;
  4. Time accumulated to qualify for OPT and/or CPT will not be lost if a student is enrolled in and completes a full course of online study while abroad during the Fall 2020 semester.

New International Students Physically Located outside the United States for Fall 2020

  1. Students are strongly encouraged to begin their academic program by participating in the fall 2020 online learning experience. Students in the online cohort should not travel to the US mid-semester this fall;
  2. Students who are able to secure visas to arrive Purdue to enroll in the Spring 2021 semester should plan to arrive no earlier than 30 days prior to the start of the session scheduled to begin on January 11.

All Purdue International Students

Purdue is continuing to support students who feel that these changes in guidance have impacted their decision to pursue residential or online enrollment options. Any student who believes that he/she needs to request a change may apply for one by using the form found here. Be sure to select “Request a significant hardship accommodation – online and residential experience” from the topic dropdown. Please note that a change at this late date, if approved, may result in a student's inability to obtain enrollment in all desired courses. That said, we will do everything possible to honor your request.

We are pleased that the stance taken by numerous higher education institutions, including Purdue, led to this favorable outcome. We appreciate that you have chosen to pursue your education with us. Purdue leadership, faculty and staff will continue to support you to the best of our ability. And, we certainly look forward to welcoming you this fall – in West Lafayette or online.


Jay T. Akridge
Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs and Diversity

Michael A. Brzezinski
Dean, International Programs

Christine K. Collins
Director, International Student Services