What’s Next: International Student Admits

In addition to the steps for First Time In College or Transfer students offered admission to USF St. Petersburg, International students will need to submit additional documents.

1. Determine your student visa.  Most international students come to USF St. Petersburg on F-1 or J-1 student visas.  Eligibility documents from USF St. Petersburg — 1-20s or DS 2019s — are required to apply for an F-1 visa or J-1 visa respectively.

The F-1 is the most commonly used student visa.  Students must have a valid educational purpose for coming to the United States, be a full-time student, and provide proof of their ability to fund their education. Upon admission to a USF St. Petersburg program and receipt of financial documentation, the student is issued an I-20 to be used to obtain the F-1 visa at a US Embassy or Consulate.  The spouse or children of an F-1 student enter the US on F-2 visas and are not eligible to attend university or work in the US.

The J-1 visa is an “exchange visitor” visa that is managed under the auspices of the Exchange Visitor Program of the US Department of State.  The J-1 visa is used primarily by exchange students (non degree-seeking) and students sponsored by US government agencies. Students who meet the criteria for the J-1 visa will be issued a DS-2019 by USF St. Petersburg or by a United States government agency. The spouse or children of a J-1 student enter the US on a J-2 visa. Spouses in J-2 status may apply to USCIS for permission to work after their arrival in the US. Spouses and children may also attend school.

2. Submit financial support documents.

US immigration law requires the university to verify that students seeking an F-1 or J-1 student visa has sufficient funds to finance their studies for the duration of their graduate program. Financial documentation and the Promissory Notes of Financial Support must be completed before an I-20 can be issued to an admitted student.

For questions related to student visas or to obtain the I-20 or DS 2019, please contact the USF St. Petersburg Office of the Registrar at (727) 873-4645.

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