Student Visa

Applying for a U.S. Student Visa

1. Print your I-20 or DS-2019 and sign the first page

2. Pay the SEVIS I-901 fee

  • All individuals applying for a student visa pay the I-901 fee unless they have paid it with a recent prior admission
  • The payment receipt is proof of your payment

Pay fee

3. Complete visa application form DS-160

  • Contact the U.S. embassy or consulate in your country for visa application information required for your country
  • U.S. student visas may take up to four to six weeks to process
  • Schedule an interview up to 120 days before the start date of your program

Fill out visa application

4. Go to the embassy or consulate or follow the mailing instructions to apply for a student visa

Bring or mail these items

  • The printed and signed I-20 or DS-2019 form and your UMKC admission letter
  • The nonrefundable visa application fee (Follow payment instructions on the form)
  • A passport valid for at least six months beyond your intended stay in the United States
  • Photo measuring 22mm x 35mm (if your photo upload failed when submitting the DS-160)
  • Original school transcripts, diplomas, degrees or certificates, and any copies of any test scores submitted as a part of your admission (TOEFL, IELTS, GRE, etc.)
  • Copy of completed statement of finances (PDF)
  • Evidence that demonstrates strong ties to your country or any other residence outside of the United States

Tips for Applying for a Student Visa

  • You must prove that you have sufficient money to cover the cost of your education. At your interview, you may present the statement of finances (PDF) you sent to UMKC.
  • You should be able to articulate a clear educational goal to the visa officer.
    • Include why you chose UMKC over other institutions. Reasons may include degree programs or research options; financial assistance; low cost of living expenses and tuition; a friend who is currently enrolled or you know or want to work with a faculty or staff member from UMKC
    • Include your long-term goals as they relate to career potential in your home country (or elsewhere outside of the United States). If the consular official believes that it is your intent to immigrate to the United States rather than return to your country after your studies are completed, your visa may be denied. The F-1 and J-1 visas are non-immigrant visas, so hopes for immigration to the United States is one of the major reasons for visa denials.
  • Do not get discouraged if you are denied a visa. If you are denied a visa, the consular official will notify you in writing regarding the reason. You may reapply for a student visa when you can submit the needed items or documentation.
  • If you need more time to apply for a visa, you may defer your admission.