Preparing Your visa application

Your application should consist of the items on the checklist below.

Checklist for Student Visa Application □ SEVIS I-20, filled out by your school and signed by you. □ Receipt for having paid the SEVIS fee, (currently $100). □ Form DS-156, Nonimmigrant Visa Application. □ Form DS-158, Contact Information and Work History for Nonimmigrant Visa Applicant. □ Form DS-157, Supplemental Nonimmigrant Visa Application, if you're either a male applicant between 16 and 45 years of age or you come from a state that the U.S. believes sponsors terrorism and you are age 16 or older, whether male or female. □ Visa application fee (currently $100). □ Visa issuance reciprocity fee (the amount varies by country). □ Your passport, valid for at least six months. □ One passport-type photo of you and one of each of your spouse and children, 2 inches x 2 inches. □ Long-form birth certificate for you and each accompanying relative. □ Marriage certificate if you are married and bringing your spouse. □ If either you or your spouse has ever been married before, copies of divorce and death certificates showing termination of all previous marriages. □ Transcripts, diplomas, and results of any standardized tests required by the school you'll be attending, showing your previous education and your qualifications to pursue your chosen course of study. □ Documents showing reasons that you'll return to your home country, such as own-ership of real estate, relationships with close family members staying behind, or proof that a job will be waiting for you on your return. □ If you're entering a flight training program, additional required documents, as dis-cussed below. □ Proof of sufficient funds, such as: □ USCIS Form I-134, Affidavit of Support from a U.S. friend or relative, or letter from a friend or relative promising support. □ Bank statements. □ Personal financial statements. □ Evidence of your current sources of income.

A few of the items on this checklist require additional explanation.

Evidence of academic qualifica­tions. If you will be attending a u. s. col­lege or university, some consular officers will require you to prove that you are academically qualified to pursue the pro­gram, even though the school itself has already accepted you. Therefore, you should present evidence of all of your previous education, in the form of official transcripts and diplomas from schools you attended. Also, submit standardized test results, if your school required such tests. If these documents are not avail­able, submit detailed letters by officials of the schools you previously attended, describing the extent and nature of your education.

Evidence of intent to return. You

will need documents establishing your intent to leave the u. s. when your stud­ies are completed. The consulate will want to see evidence of ties to some other country so strong that you will be highly motivated to return there. Proof of such ties can include deeds verify­ing ownership of a house or other real property, written statements from you explaining that close relatives live there, or letters from a company showing that you have a job waiting when you return from the united states.

Evidence of sufficient funds. Most important, you must submit documents showing that you presently have suffi­cient funds available to cover all tuition and living costs for your first year of study. The Certificate of Eligibility, Form sEVIs I-20, gives the school’s estimate of what your total annual expenses will be. specifically, you must show you have that much money presently available.

You must also document that you have a source of funds to cover your expenses in future years without having to work.

The best evidence of your ability to pay educational expenses is a letter from a bank, or a bank statement, either in the U. S. or abroad, showing an account in your name with a balance of at least the amount of money it will take to pay for your first year of education.

Alternatively, you can submit a writ­ten guarantee of support signed by an immediate relative, preferably a parent, together with your relative’s bank state­ments. unless your relative can show enough assets to prove he or she can support you without additional income, you should also show that your relative is presently employed. You can docu­ment this by submitting a letter from the employer verifying your relative’s work situation.

Although the guarantee of support may be in the form of a simple written statement in your relative’s own words, we suggest you use Form I-134, called an Affidavit of support. A copy of this form is on the USCIS website at www. us – cis. gov. The questions on Form I-134 are self-explanatory. Be aware that the form was designed to be filled out by some­one living in the United States. Since it is quite likely that the person who will support you is living outside the u. s., any questions that apply to u. s. residents should be answered “N/A.”

Additional documents for flight trainees. If you’re applying for an F or M visa for U. S. flight training, you will be required to submit written information and documents specifying the following:

• your reason for the training (be specific)

• current employer and your position

• who is paying for the training (name and relationship)

• your most recent flight certifications and ratings

• information on what kind of aircraft the training is for (document must be signed by a school official in the United States)

• certified take-off weight of the air­craft type (document must be signed by a school official in the U. S.), and

• current rank or title if you are pres­ently working as an active pilot.