Student and Exchange Visitor Program

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Welcome to the official SEVP and SEVIS website. Here you can find the latest information and resources for F (academic) and M (vocational) students, as well as designated school officials (DSOs).

The Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) is a part of the National Security Investigations Division and acts as a bridge for government organizations that have an interest in information on nonimmigrants whose primary reason for coming to the United States is to be students. On behalf of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), SEVP manages schools, nonimmigrant students in the F and M visa classifications and their dependents. The Department of State (DoS) manages Exchange Visitor Programs, nonimmigrant exchange visitors in the J visa classification and their dependents. Both SEVP and DoS use the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) to track and monitor schools; exchange visitor programs; and F, M and J nonimmigrants while they visit the United States and participate in the U.S. education system.


SEVP collects, maintains, analyzes and provides information so only legitimate foreign students or exchange visitors gain entry to the United States. The result is an easily accessible information system that provides timely information to DoS, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), as well as a number of other federal enforcement agencies with “need to know.”

Student and Exchange Visitor Information System

SEVIS is the Internet-based system where DHS maintains information on SEVP-certified schools, as well as the international students who come to the United States to study in F or M status and attend those schools. SEVIS also maintains information on DoS-designated visitor program sponsors and J-1 visa exchange visitor program participants.

SEVIS launched in the summer of 2002. It converted a previously complicated, cumbersome and decentralized manual procedure into a centralized, user-friendly automated process. SEVIS improves data collection and reporting, enhances customer service, facilitates compliance with regulations and helps ICE better monitor schools and exchange programs, as well as F, M and J nonimmigrants.

SEVIS grew from a pilot program – the Coordinated Interagency Partnership Regulating International Students (CIPRIS). The former Immigration and Naturalization Service developed CIPRIS in partnership with the DoS Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (formerly the United States Information Agency), the Department of Education, and members of the educational and exchange program community. This multi-agency effort incorporated into SEVIS information and lessons obtained from the CIPRIS pilot program.

SEVP is currently working to develop the next generation of SEVIS. This new system, SEVIS II, will continue to serve the same basic purpose as SEVIS, while introducing new functionality to improve ease of use.

Study in the States Initiative

On Sept. 16, 2011, DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano and ICE Director John Morton launched the Study in the States Initiative at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. A key aspect of this initiative seeks to enhance coordination between the various federal agencies that play a role in implementing our international student visa and exchange visitor programs.

The launch of the Study in the States website was part of this initiative. Sponsored by DHS and managed by SEVP, this website provides a wealth of information and resources to encourage the best and brightest international students to study and learn about expanded post-graduate opportunities in the United States.

The Study in the States website allows ICE and its partner agencies, as well as DoS, to more effectively communicate information to international students, exchange visitors and their dependents. The site features dynamic and interactive content in a user-friendly manner and uses social media tools, such as Facebook and Twitter, to provide updates to visitors around the globe.