Overview for Nonimmigrant Student (F1) Applicants
JPCatholic welcomes international students! We have had students join our dynamic community from across the globe, whether from neighboring countries Mexico and Canada, or from farther destinations such as Poland, Nigeria, and India.
If you are applying from outside the USA and will require an F1 visa (student visa), please fully read the information below.
How it works:
1. Apply for Admission
In addition to the usual admissions requirements, international applicants are required to take some additional steps as part of their application:
Language Requirement: The language of instruction at JPCatholic is English, and applicants must fulfill certain English proficiency requirements to be admitted. Applicants who satisfy these requirements will not automatically be accepted. JPCatholic carefully reviews the background and qualifications of each applicant to ensure that those admitted will have a successful experience.
Non-native English speaking applicants must submit one of these minimum test scores:
- Duolingo English Test: 105
The Duolingo English Test is an English proficiency test that can be taken online, on-demand, in under an hour for only $49. The test is taken via a computer with a camera and includes a proficiency score, video interview, and writing sample which are shared with JPCatholic when you send your results. Certified results are available within 48 hours of the test session.
- TOEFL iBT: 80
- IELTS: 6.5
- Cambridge (Advanced and Proficiency Exams): Pass
Evaluated Transcripts: Your transcripts must be officially translated and sent to JPCatholic. This includes your high school transcripts, and if applicable, your college transcripts. Please use one of these services:
2. After Acceptance, Apply for Financial Aid
International students are eligible to receive institutional scholarship aid from JPCatholic, and scholarship packages are awarded based on both need and merit.
- In place of filling out the FAFSA, you will be able to submit an alternative form from JPCatholic, the “Need-Aware Financial Aid Application”
3. Submit Affidavit of Financial Support
- In order to receive Form I-20, students must document their ability to pay for the first 12 months of the average 'Cost of Attendance', minus your scholarship award. (These costs include living expenses. We utilize the California Student Aid Commission Student Expense Budgets to determine those dollar amounts)
- You must submit your Affidavit of Financial Support and supporting documentation to your Designated School Official (DSO) for evaluation. All information must be listed in US Dollars.
- Students must not expect to work in the first year of their program; this includes both work for pay as well as internships for academic credit (also referred to as Optional Practical Training, or OPT). Due to the restrictions barring off-campus work and limited availability of on-campus positions, it is impractical to anticipate any funding from these sources.
4. Receive Form I-20 “Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant Status”
- Once your eligibility to attend JPCatholic as a nonimmigrant student has been approved by your DSO, you will be issued a document called the Form I-20.
- Any student missing the following items will not be issued an I-20
- Completed application for admission including Online Application, Essay Questionnaire, and SAT/ACT/CLT scores (unless waived by admissions)
- Officially evaluated transcripts
- Official test scores for English proficiency exam
- Affidavit of Financial Support and supporting documentation
5. Pay I-901 SEVIS Fee
- Regulation requires all prospective students to pay the I-901 Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) fee before the Department of State issues you a visa. To pay the fee, go to https://www.fmjfee.com
- For more information about the payment process, please visit this DHS webpage.
- Important: Save your payment receipt!
6. Submit Visa Application
- After getting a receipt for payment of the I-901 fee, you can apply for a visa at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate. Since the application process may be slightly different in each country, please consult the instructions on the U.S. Embassy or Consulate website where you intend to apply. In general, the process is as follows:
- Complete the Visa Application online (Form DS-160)
- Upload your photo while completing Form DS-160
- Schedule an Interview at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate.
7. Visa Interview
- Important: Do NOT make final travel plans or purchase tickets until you have a visa.
- Prepare for the Interview:
- Fees – pay the non-refundable visa application fee before the interview (consult instructions on the website of the Embassy or Consulate where you will apply)
- Passport valid for travel to the United States
- Form DS-160 confirmation page
- Application fee payment receipt
- Photo – same requirements for your Form DS-160 photo
- Form I-20 – must be signed by your school official and you
- Additional documentation, if required by the U.S. Embassy or Consulate where you apply
- During the interview, a Consular Officer will determine whether you are qualified to receive a visa
- Digital fingerprint scans are taken
- If your visa is approved, you may need to pay a visa issuance fee.
8. Arrive in the USA
- When you arrive in the USA, go through customs, and receive your Form I-94 “Arrival/Departure Record”.
- This record is a stamp in your passport, which serves as a proof that you have been legally admitted to the United States and shows the authorized period of stay. The electronic record can be found at http://www.cbp.gov
- If you cannot enter the United States for the term listed on your Form I-20 (even if you will be late by just a few days), contact your Designated School Official immediately so that they can accurately enter this information in your SEVIS record and prevent termination of your nonimmigrant status
- General information on studying in the United States can be found at this DHS website.
- Students must maintain a full course load (for undergraduates, 12 or more credits) to maintain their F1 visa status. Students desiring to transfer credit should keep this in mind due to our limited class availability.
- Students must abide by all University policies, including those listed in the University Catalog, Student Handbooks, or other direction from University officials. It is recommended that you review all documentation prior to enrolling.
- All students must have major medical health insurance as a condition of enrollment, and should be prepared to assume the costs of their medical care. See Health Insurance Information.
Please contact the Admissions office with any general admissions inquiries.
Questions specific to the information above can be directed to our Designated School Officials (DSO):
Lisa Williams, firstname.lastname@example.org