22 CFR § 62.41 - Change of category.
(a) The Department of State may, in its discretion, permit an exchange visitor to change his or her category of exchange participation. Any change in category must be clearly consistent with and closely related to the participant's original exchange objective and necessary due to unusual or exceptional circumstances.
(b) A request for change of category along with supporting justification must be submitted to the Department of State by the participant's sponsor. Upon Department of State approval the sponsor shall issue to the exchange visitor a duly executed Form DS-2019 reflecting such change of category and provide a notification copy of such form to the Department of State.
(c) Requests for change of category from research scholar to student will be evaluated recognizing the fact that, in some cases, research skills can be substantially enhanced by doctoral study.
(d) An exchange visitor who applies for a change of category pursuant to these regulations is considered to be maintaining lawful status during the pendency of the application.
(e) An exchange visitor who applies for a change of category and who subsequently receives notice from the Department of State that the request has been denied is considered to be maintaining lawful status for an additional period of thirty days from the day of such notice, during which time the exchange visitor is expected to depart the country, or for a period of thirty days from expiration of the exchange visitors' Form DS-2019, whichever is later.