After you have been accepted at the State University of New York - Brockport, you will need to ensure that you have proper documentation in order to study in the United States. Not only will you need a U.S. visa, but you will need the documents below as well:
A passport is a document that certifies both the identity and nationality of its holder. Passports are issued by a national government and are required for international travel.
Immigration regulations state that you are responsible for keeping your passport valid at all times during your stay here in the United States. Your passport can be revalidated or renewed through your embassy or consulate.
The I-20 form is a document issued by U.S. colleges and universities that provides the supporting information you need to secure a U.S. student visa.
Upon your acceptance to SUNY- Brockport, the Office of International Student Services will issue the I-20 form to you. In order to receive your I-20 form, you must submit the following items to the Office of International Student Services:
Once that information has been received and verified by the Office of International Student Services, an I-20 form will be mailed to you, allowing you to apply for a F-1 visa for your studies.
The so-called “I-20 ID Copy” is page 3 of your four-page I-20 form. Upon entry into the United States, an immigration officer will stamp the first page and return it to you. Your original I-20 ID and any additional I-20 forms issued to you become the permanent record of your periods of stay in the United States. The International Student Services staff will note on your I-20 ID any validation for re-entry, transfer of schools, or endorsement to work. For more information regarding this, please see the Entering the United States page.
A visa is a stamped (or pasted-in) endorsement made in the passport by an American consular or embassy official outside the U.S. It indicates that all requirements have been met for entry into the U.S. The number of entries allowed within a specified period is indicated on the visa stamp and can vary from country to country. A valid visa is essential for entering and re-entering the U.S. (except for Canadian citizens, in which case a passport is sufficient), but it does not determine the length of time you may remain in the U.S.
The F-1 visa is the specific type of visa required for international students to enter and study in the United States. To secure your F-1 visa, you will need to apply through a U.S. Embassy or Consulate in your home country.
For information on obtaining a F-1 visa, click here.
This is a small, white card that is usually stapled to your visa page in your passport by an immigration officer. However, beginning April 30, 2013 many ports of entry immigration officers will complete the I-94 electronicially. The I-94 records the length of your authorized stay in the U.S. The I-94 – not the visa stamp – is your record of permission to remain in the U.S. You may still receive a paper copy of this form until all ports of entry have updated to the electronic process. For more information regarding this, please see the Entering the United States page.
For F-1 visa holders, the I-94 is usually marked F-1 “D/S” or "Duration of Status”, which means you have permission to remain in the U.S. for the length of your program as stated on your I-20 or IAP-66, as long as you are fully engaged in studies. It is important that the information on your I-94 matches that in your passport, and that you enter the U.S. in F-1 student status.
If you have any questions about the required documents you need, please contact the Office of International Student Services.