An international student needs the F-1 Visa to legally enter the U.S. for the purpose of studying in a U.S. Institution.
The international student’s spouse and children need the F-2 Visa to legally enter the U.S.
The F Visa is a U.S. State Department document that can only be obtained at the U.S. Consulate in the student’s home country.
Steps for Obtaining the F-1 or F-2 Visa:
- Submit College admissions application.
- Receive notification of College admissions.
- Submit completed Pre-I-20 application to ISSO.
- ISSO reviews Affidavit of Support and determines financial eligibility for issuance of the I-20.
See Pre I-20 Package.
- ISSO mails I-20 document(s) to student (and dependents).
- Student (and dependents) receive I-20, pay SEVIS I-901 fee and make an appointment at the U.S. Consulate.
- Upon receiving the I-20, you and/or your dependents, will need to make an appointment at the U.S. Consulate to apply for the F-1 Student Visa, F-2 Dependent Visa.
- Take a valid passport, I-20, Financial Documents and the SEVIS I-901 payment receipt to the U.S. Consulate to apply for the F Visa.
- After receiving the F-1 Visa, you are ready to enter the U.S.
- At the U.S. Port of Entry present the following documents: valid passport with the F-1 Visa and I-20 to the U.S. Citizenship and Naturalization Service (USCIS) Officer.
- Report to ISSO within 2-3 days of your U.S arrival. Bring your passport, I-94, F-1 Visa & I-20 with you. The I-94( Electronic arrival/departure record) can be obtained via www.cbp.gov/I-94
- Once you report to ISSO, the USCIS Designated School Official (DSO) will notify SEVIS(Students Exchange Visitor Information System) of your arrival at the College and provide you with a Visa/Immigration and College orientation.