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DHS Extends Special Student Relief for Students from Afghanistan


On September 21, 2023 the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) extended Special Student Relief (SSR) to F-1 students from Afghanistaneffective from September 25, 2023 through May 20, 2025. The original SSR notice was set to expire on November 20, 2023.

 What is Special Student Relief?

Special Student Relief (SSR) is the suspension of specific immigration regulations for F-1 students who face unexpected hardship due to a situation in their home country. This particular notice suspends applicable on-campus and off-campus employment regulations as well as enrollment requirements.

Who is eligible for the SSR extended to Afghan students?

Per the DHS Notice, this extension of SSR applies to F-1 students who:

  • Are citizens of Afghanistan regardless of country of birth (or individuals having no nationality who last habitually resided in Afghanistan);
  • Are lawfully present in the United States in an F-1 nonimmigrant status on the date of publication of this notice;
  • Are enrolled in a Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP)-certified school;
  • Are currently maintaining F-1 nonimmigrant status; and
  • Are experiencing severe economic hardship as a direct result of the current armed conflict and humanitarian crisis.

How do I apply for SSR?

If you are interested in applying for Special Student Relief, please reach out to ISS through the Contact ISS form.