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Admitted/New Students

International Students

Immigration Process

How to Obtain Your I-20 Documents

In order to obtain a Form I-20 from Concordia University Irvine, the student must first be admitted into the university. After you are admitted, you will need an immigration document (I-20) to apply for an F-1 visa at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate in your country.

Here are the steps you need to follow to receive an I-20 from Concordia University Irvine:

Step 1: Submit Your Deposit

After you are admitted to Concordia University, you must submit your deposit www.cui.edu/deposit

Step 2: Submit the I-20 Request Form (NEW/Admitted Student) and Supporting Financial Proof to Your Immigration Specialist

Financial Documents For F-1 (Student) Visa: If you intend to apply for an F-1 (student) visa, you will be required by a U.S. consular officer to present a Form I-20 and supporting financial documents to demonstrate your ability to meet financial obligations for the first year of your academic program.

All students are required to demonstrate financial ability to pay for at least one year of tuition, fees, and living expenses before Concordia University can issue an immigration document (I-20).

Please submit the below documents to [email protected]

  1. An Affidavit of Financial Document Form
  2. Current Official Bank Statement (less than 6 months old)
  3. For the estimated costs per program of study, click here: Cost Guides

Note: The financial documents cannot be older than six months at the time of submission to Concordia University Irvine in order to be considered valid. Financial support may be from your own resources or from a sponsor. If your sponsor is a U.S. citizen or U.S. legal permanent resident, the affidavit of support (PDF) must be completed and submitted with your application. These supporting financial documents will also be required at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate when you apply for your visa.

Acceptable evidence of financial support:

  • Official Bank statements
  • Letter on Bank letterhead with required signature/stamp
  • Scholarship letters
  • Lines of credit Governmental funding

Unacceptable financial documents:

  • Chartered accountant statements
  • Payroll reports/expected income
  • Tax statements and W-2’s
  • Property assessments
  • Credit cards
  • Bank statements lacking currency amounts
  • Other statements of non-liquid assets

If you are transferring to Concordia University from another U.S. institution, please also provide the following additional items:

For questions on the Immigration process, please contact the immigration specialist at [email protected] or (949) 214-3473.

Step 3: Receiving Your Immigration Document

Your I-20 will be issued within 2 weeks* from the time the Global Programs office receives and reviews all of your documents. We will then mail it out to you to the mailing address you provided on your I-20 Request Form.

**Any issues that arise during the review process may delay the issuance of your immigration documents. If issues do arise during the review process, OGP will contact you through the email you provided at the time of your application to Concordia University.

Please choose one of the following options when requesting to have your immigration documents mailed. Please provide your full name and E#.

Authorization

The student may authorize a friend, relative, or department to pick up your documents. If this service is preferred, please send an email at [email protected]

Regular Overseas Mail (this may take as long as 4 weeks)

We will send the immigration document by regular airmail at no additional cost to the student. If you want your I-20 sent by regular overseas mail it is important that you fill out the ‘I-20 Request Form’ and submit it. Your I-20 will be sent to the mailing address provided on the I-20 Request Form. Please note that this service does not have tracking numbers and that mailing can take up to 10-30 business days.

Express Mail Service

Concordia University Irvine uses an express mail service that will allow you to receive your I-20 through DHL or FedEx. Requesting these services of mailing immigration documents through express mail is at the students’ expense and your credit card (Visa, MasterCard, or Discover cards only) will be charged upon requesting the service. To request express mailing of your documents, go to the following website.

study.eshipglobal.com
 

You must use the website provided above – do not go through the DHL or FedEx website directly, all communication will go through the eshipglobal service, who will notify us that you are requesting your I-20 to be sent by express mail.

You will be required to create your own user name and password in order to create an account. Be sure you have the following items ready:

  • Your E#
  • Mailing address
  • Email address
  • Telephone number
  • Credit card information
  • Choose Department/Contact "Global Programs" as the sender

Upon completing the request, eShip will send you an email that includes a tracking number and order details for your shipment.

If you have additional questions about how to use this service, please e-mail [email protected].

Step 4: Pay the SEVIS Fee

Before applying for an F-1 visa, all first time F-1 visa applicants (as well as some others) are required to pay the SEVIS FEE in addition to the visa application fee. For more information, please click here: SEVIS Fee for F1 Students.

Step 5: Apply for a Visa

After you receive your immigration documents, you will need to apply at the US Embassy or Consulate in your country for your F-1 visa.

Special Notes: F1 students who attended another U.S. school before coming to CUI, you MUST request your previous school to transfer your SEVIS record to CUI. You do not need to apply for a new visa if not traveling abroad during the transition, or if your current F1 visa in your passport is still valid upon returning from travel abroad.

Canadian citizens: Canadian citizens are NOT required to obtain a U.S. visa to enter the United States. However, when you come to attend school, you must present the following documents for inspection either at a pre-inspection site in Canada or upon entry to the United States:

  • Canadian passport
  • Admission letter to Concordia University
  • Original I-20
  • SEVIS Fee Payment Receipt
  • Financial documentation upon inspection.

Step 6: Enter the US

Entering the United States / Arrival Information

Enter the U.S. within 30 days before the program starting date on I-20
DO NOT attempt to enter the U.S. more than 30 days before the program starting date on your I-20! Although you may apply for an F-1 visa up to 120 days prior to the I-20 start date, F-1 visa holders are NOT permitted to enter the U.S. more than 30 days before the start date on your I-20. Also, entry to the U.S. after the first day of classes requires permission from University officials and may require the issuance of a new I-20 form.

Enter U.S. on an F1 visa only
DO NOT enter the United States on a B-1/B-2 visitor visa or F-2 dependent visa even if you have one in your passport. You will not be allowed to attend school on a B-1/B-2 or F-2 visa in the U.S. U.S. Customs and Immigration Services (USCIS) would deny your application to change status from B-1/B-2 to F1 if you have evidence of intending to go school prior to your arrival, such as having applied for school or having requested a Form I-20.

Use CUI I-20 when entering the U.S.
DO NOT DO NOT enter the United States with an I-20 issued by another school! If it is the first time you have attended school in the U.S., your F1 visa stamp should bear the CUI name. If you have already obtained a visa with another school's name listed on it, please contact Immigration Specialist at [email protected] or by phone at (949) 214-3473.

Procedures at the Port of Entry

Upon arrival to the U.S., a U.S. Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) officer will review your immigration documents; I-20, valid passport, and F1 or J1 visa. The International Center highly recommends you also hand carry financial documents, admission letter, and I-901 receipt of the SEVIS fee.

Documents Needed at the Port of Entry

    1. I-20
    2. Valid Passport
    3. Financial documents (Proof of sufficient funds to pay for tuition and fees)
    4. Admissions Letter from Concordia University Irvine
    5. I-901 receipt of SEVIS fee
    6. Proof of ties to Canada

Traveling without all immigration documents needed to enter the U.S. might be sufficient reason to be denied entry. Entry to the U.S. is up to the discretion of the immigration officer at the P.O.E.

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