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Visa Information

International students pursuing degree programs need an F-1 (non-immigrant) or student visa. After being accepted to study at in a college or university, the student will need to apply with the Department of State at an U.S embassy or consulate for an F-1 (student) visa.  This includes visa fees, a scheduled interview, and a complete application form. The admitting college or university will issue a SEVIS (Student and Exchange Visitor Information System) I-20 form, which will also be needed to apply for the F-1 visa.

Those coming for cultural exchanges, summer study tours or those who are financially supported by their home government may qualify for a J1 exchange visitor visa.
International students must have insurance to cover accident, illness, medical evacuation, or return of remains in case of death. They must also be able to support themselves financially during their stay. These documentations are required during the visa application.

An F1 visa student is permitted to work part-time on-campus (20 hours per week) but not off-campus during the first year of study. After the first year of study, permission to work off-campus may be granted by the school in cases of curricular work requirements (those in co-operative education programs or with required internships or other work needs necessary for degree completion).

The Department of Homeland Security/Immigration and Customs Enforcement branches of the Federal Government monitor the visa of students. The DHS/ICE  may grant permission for off-campus employment after the first year in cases of demonstrated economic hardship. F1 students are also eligible for 12 months of optional practical training. Students in science, technology, engineering, or mathematics fields may be eligible for up to 29 months of optional practical training. J1 students are eligible for 18 months of academic training (three years if completing a doctoral degree).




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