Visa Application Process

This information is for individuals who plan to enter the United States for the first time to study in F-1 immigration status.

Guidelines to apply for a student/exchange visitor visa:

  • Obtain your Form I-20 from Olin.
  • Pay the SEVIS I-901 fee at least three business days before your visa interview; print a receipt. For a brief explanation of the fee requirement and procedure to pay online, visit the SEVP web site.
  • Schedule an F-1 visa interview at your local U.S. consulate or embassy. Specific instructions and requirements can be found on the consulate/embassy's website.
    • It is important to apply for your visa as far in advance as possible. Many consulates/embassies recommend that appointments be made no more than 90 days from the intended date of travel, but some can make earlier arrangements.
  • Prepare and bring the required documentation to your visa interview. Confirm with the embassy/consulate what documentation is required. Below is a general check-list:
      • Passport valid at least six months into the future
      • Original Form I-20 (with your signature on page 1)
      • Olin acceptance letter
      • Completed and signed visa application form(s
      • Photograph(s) in the prescribed format 
      • Receipt of visa fee(s) payment 
      • Receipt of SEVIS I-901 fee payment
        • If you have not received an official receipt in the mail showing payment and you paid the fee electronically, the consulate will accept the temporary receipt you printed from your computer. If you do not have a receipt, the consulate may be able to see your payment electronically if your fee payment was processed at least 3 business days before your interview.
      • Evidence of funding sufficient to cover your tuition and living expenses during the first year of your program (i.e. original Olin Declaration/Certificate of Finances)
      • Any information that proves that you will return to your home country after finishing your studies in the U.S. This may include proof of property, family, or other ties to your community.