SEVIS means Student and Exchange Visitor Information System. This system allows US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS, formerly BCIS or the INS) to maintain up-to-date information on F-1 students and their F-2 dependents and J-1 exchange visitors and their J-2 dependents. Schools must report certain information about these individuals electronically to the USCIS.
Much of the required information has always been available to the USCIS, but until 2003 was not required to be maintained in the SEVIS database.
The ISO gets all its academic data from international students themselves and from their academic departments. Personal data and administrative data come directly from MIT's central database, MITSIS. MIT only reports required information to the SEVIS system.
All data updates will be reported automatically to the SEVIS system unless the data involves a disciplinary action, a withdrawal, or an approved medical leave.