Required Documents

When you go to the consulate, you will need to bring the following items:

  • Passport - Your passport must be valid for travel to the United States and must be valid at least six months after your proposed date of entry into the U.S.  You will need to be sure it remains valid throughout our stay in the U.S.
  • Required visa application and fee. 
  • SEVIS I-901 fee receipt
  • Recent 2 X 2 photograph
  • Your Certificate of Eligibility (Form I-20 or DS-2019). You will need to submit a SEVIS generated I-20 or DS-2019 which will be provided by the University of Michigan-Dearborn.  It must be signed by the University of Michigan-Dearborn Designated School Official or Responsible Officer and the student before it is presented at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate.
  • A copy of your letter of admission to the University of Michigan-Dearborn. Please also bring the original with you in case they need to see the original.
  • Proof of financial documentation, which demonstrates your ability to meet the total cost of education. Please be sure that you bring originals of all documents.  Consular and immigration officers exercise considerable discretion in determining whether financial support exists and is sufficient to cover the entire period of your stay.  Prepare documentation that is thorough, consistent, credible, and varied.  Examples are:
    • A detailed bank statement from you or your sponsor
    • Evidence of a scholarship
    • Any combination of grants and personal financing which will meet the estimated expenses (including tuition) of your stay in the United States.
  • Evidence of academic credentials, which qualify you for admission as well as evidence of knowledge of English which, is sufficient for academic study in the U.S. (See Undergraduate Proficiency Requirements or Graduate Proficiency Requirements as appropriate)
  • Evidence of sufficient ties to your home country and/or evidence which demonstrates your intent to depart the U.S. after you complete your studies.

The procedures for obtaining a visa vary greatly around the world. Therefore, we encourage you to check with your nearest consulate on their required procedures to plan your application process accordingly. In some countries you must apply for your visa in person, and an appointment may be required. If this happens you may also be required to have an interview with a U.S. consular officer. While in some other countries, you can only apply by mail.

Consular Review and Determination 

  • J-Visas:  The consular officer will evaluate the documents submitted and interview the applicant to determine whether they are eligible for a J-1 visa and whether or not they would be subject to the two-year home country physical presence requirement of I.N.A. 212(e) by participating in the program.
  • F-Visas:  Consular offices are directed to annotate the visa with the name of the school who's Form-120 the applicant provided to obtain the visa.  This is an important annotation, since regulations require the students seeking initial F-1 admission to the United States to attend the school specified on the visa (although students who are returning to the United States in the future, after having been initially admitted, are not subject to this restriction).
  • If you are granted a visa, a stamp will be placed in your passport which notes, in addition to the information above, the period of its validity, and number of entries allowed.  Check the visa carefully to ensure that all information is correct before leaving the Embassy or Consulate.  This stamp is a permit to seek entry to the United States; it does not solely determine how long you can remain in this country, it is an entry permit only.
  • If you are denied a student visa, ask the officer for the reason in writing and a list of documents he or she would suggest you bring in order to overcome the refusal.