Applying for Visa
Now that you have your Admissions Packet: I-20 Form, Acceptance Letter, and Orientation schedule, you must apply for a Student Visa from your home country or from the country where you reside.
Steps for applying for a F-1 student visa:
- Receive your Admissions Packet with the following: I-20 Form, Acceptance Letter, and Orientation schedule
- Review your documents to make sure all the information is correct and sign the I-20
- Pay the I-901 Fee at http://www.ice.gov/sevis/I901. SEVIS I-901 Fee Frequently Asked Questions http://www.ice.gov/sevis/I901/FAQ
- Find the consulate near you on the American Embassy or Consulate Visa Consul website
- Apply and make an appointment for an interview
- Please visit the US State Department’s Student Visa webpage for additional information on the following:
- Required Documentation
- Required Visa Fees
- Requirements for spouses and children
Please check for the visa wait times for your specific city/country at http://travel.state.gov/content/visas/english/general/wait-times.html/
The Visa Interview can be the most challenging and crucial step to begin your study at Fulton-Montgomery Community College (FM) as an international student. The interview will last about 2-3 minutes. You must be able to prove the following:
- Have strong ties to your home country which demonstrate your intention to return home after your studies
- Have sufficient funds to pay for your financial needs while you are studying in the U.S. This includes tuition, health insurance, housing and travel expenses etc.
- Have legitimate intentions to study full-time and gain education and training which will be useful in your home country. Below are some helpful tips for you to consider when you go to the U.S. Consulate or Embassy to apply for your student visa. Your chances of being granted a visa are highest if you follow each suggestion carefully:
- Demonstrate your intent to return to your country
- Show the officer that you have strong ties to your home country, and that your reasons for returning home are stronger than reasons for staying in the United States.
- The officer may ask about your intentions or prospects for future employment, family or other relationships, educational objectives, and long-term plans in your home country.
- Speak in English, if possible
- Listen carefully to the question asked. Answer that question only. Explain how further study in English will help you in the future.
- Know about FM and how it fits into your career plan
- Be prepared to explain why you want to study in a particular program in the U.S.
- Keep your answers short
- Because of the high number of applications, consular officers must conduct quick, efficient interviews. They usually make a decision based on impressions formed during the first few minutes. Keep your answers short and to the point.
- Supplemental Documentation
- The officer should be able to see easily which documents you have and why you are presenting them. Lengthy explanations cannot be evaluated quickly. Remember your interview will be just 2-3 minutes.