The following steps are intended to prepare you for your visit to a
U.S. Consulate or Embassy when requesting a new visa stamp or extension
of an existing visa stamp. Be aware that you may be asked for additional
- Visa fee charge. If you are charged a fee, it is approximately
the same as that which is charged by your government to a United States
citizen for a similar type visa. You can check this link for reciprocity
- Your passport should be valid for at least 6 months longer than your intended period of stay in the United States.
- You will need to fill out a Nonimmigrant Visa Application Form
156. A separate application is required for each traveler, regardless of
age and whether or not more than one person is included in the same
passport. You may also be asked to complete a Supplemental Nonimmigrant
Visa Application Form 157. Department of State now requires security
clearances of males and females of certain countries who are between the
age of 16 and 45. Security clearances will cause delays in the visa
processing time. Apply as soon as possible so that you will be able to
arrive at Fletcher on time. Security clearances are taking between 1 and
4 months to complete. The U.S. Embassy reserves the right to request a
security clearance of anyone, prior to issuing a visa. You will also be
required to pay the SEVIS FEE of $100.00 prior to your appointment with
the U.S. Consulate/Embassy. Submit Form I901 and payment. You will need
to present a receipt for the payment when application is made for the
- You will need a recent photograph 1-1/2 inches square (37 X 37 mm.) with your usual signature written on the REVERSE.
See details here.
- Financial Documentation. If you are responsible for financially
sponsoring yourself, you will need to present a bank statement. IF your
stay in the United States is going to be financed by a parent or by
family funds, you will need a letter outlining their intent to support
you, as well as an official bank statement verifying that the funds are
available. If your financial sponsor is The Fletcher School, you will
need to send a copy of your documentation to cover the difference
between the amount of the award and the amount required to cover your
educational living expenses for one academic year (10 months).
As a rule, the law presumes that each
alien applying for admission to the U.S. is intending to immigrate
unless the applicant can establish that he or she is a bona fide
nonimmigrant under one of the nonimmigrant categories (such as F-1, F-2,
J-1, J-2, H-1, H-4, TN etc.) The burden of proof rests with the alien
applicant to demonstrate eligibility for a non-immigrant visa or entry.
Nonimmigrants must demonstrate that they have a residence in a foreign
country that they have no intention of abandoning and that they are
coming to the United States temporarily for some specific purpose.
Inspection at the U.S. Port of Entry
A visa does not guarantee entry into the United States. The bearer
of the visa is subject to inspection at the port of entry by U.S.
Immigration officials who have authority to deny admission. Therefore,
students should carry evidence submitted to the consular officer when
the visa was obtained for presentation to immigration inspectors at the
port of entry into the U.S. Do not pack this documentation in your
suitcase because you will not have access to it when needed.
SEVIS Tracking System
The tracking system is referred to as the Student and Exchange
Visitor Information System (SEVIS). All U.S. academic institutions are
required to use SEVIS. Students have been issued a student visa document
that is linked to the USCIS datatbase. While a student you must
maintain certain academic conditions in order to remain in legal status
with USCIS. The International Student Advisor will advise you on these
requirements when you arrive at Fletcher. Please also consult the
SEVIS website for more information.
Registration and Monitoring of Certain Nonimmigrants
Certain international non-immigrants are required to make specific
reports to USCIS. Please check the Special Registration page for