If the Department of State issues you an F or M student visa, this means that you are coming to the United States to study. You should not take any action that detracts from that purpose. Maintaining your status means:
- Fulfilling the purpose for why the Department of State issued you your visa.
- Following the regulations associated with that purpose.
F-1 and M-1 students share the same primary purpose for coming to the United States however, F-1 students enroll in more traditional academic programs, while M-1 students enroll in vocational programs. Because these two types of programs are different in nature, the types of benefits an international student may be eligible for and how long they may remain in the country depend on whether they are an F-1 or M-1 student. Learn more about these specific differences by reviewing the F&M Student Status: Know the Difference infographic.