Visa Application

You are applying to the U.S. Department of State for your student visa with ECU’s support of your candidacy. Your student visa application consists of:

  1. Original letter offering you admission
  2. Completed Confidential Financial Form and supporting financial documents
  3. Form I-20 for F1 students (or DS-2019 for J1 students) issued to you by ECU (needed to book your student visa interview)
  4. Proof of payment for fees required by the U.S. federal government
  5. Your interview with a U.S. Consular or Customs & Border officer

If you are approved, you will have two parts to your student visa:

  1. The sticker in your passport
  2. The Form I-20 issued to you by ECU

If you already have a valid student visa, please contact our office to confirm border-crossing requirements.


Receiving Forms from ECU

When you receive your I-20 (F1 students) or DS-2019 (J1 students), please do the following:

  • Review it carefully.
  • Make sure that all information in the document about you and your program of study is true and accurate.
  • If you find a mistake, please contact our office immediately.
  • If there are no mistakes, sign and date the document as required (NOTE: In the U.S., dates follow the month/day/year format).
  • Carefully note your “reporting date”. This is the day by which you should enter the U.S. If you plan to arrive late, please contact our office immediately.

Once you have checked over your I-20 or DS-2019 and made sure that everything is true and accurate, please confirm this with our office.


Make a Visa Appointment

To make your visa appointment, you should do the following:
It is very important that you apply for your visa as early as possible. Many consulates/embassies recommend that appointments should be made no more than 120 days from the intended date of travel.

  • Read this page on paying the I-901 fee and watch this tutorial online.
  • Pay your I-901 fee online.
    • Note: if you are a citizen of Canada or Bermuda, you are required to pay the fee at least three days before going to a U.S. port of entry. The fee cannot be paid at the port of entry or U.S. Embassy/Consulate.
    • Note: if you are transferring schools, extending your program, or applying for an F-2 dependent visa you do not need to pay this fee.
    • For online payments: once you have completed the form online, you can submit payment via Visa, Mastercard, or American Express. Print a copy of your receipt and keep it with your other immigration documents. Take this receipt to your visa interview. Online payments must be submitted at least 3 business days before your visa interview.
    • For mailed payments: payment is by check or money order only. If you choose to mail your payment, you must make sure that there is enough time for the payment to reach the Department of Homeland Security at least 3 business days before your visa interview.
  • Read this page on completing you DS-160.
  • Complete your DS-160 and pay the associated fee. You will need to print your confirmation (the page with the barcode) to take with you to your interview.
    • This form requires significant time. Please ensure you complete it in full and accurately. Incomplete submission can result in automatic denial of your visa application.
  • Males only: Complete and submit the DS-157 Form.  It is also available at the U.S. Consulate.


Documentation to the U.S. Embassy or Consulate

As a non-immigrant visa applicant, you will normally be required to submit documentation to the U.S. Consulate abroad.


What if my visa application is denied?

If you are denied a student visa, don’t lose hope. A visa denial is not permanent and may be reconsidered if you show further convincing evidence. We strongly suggest that you contact us if you are denied a visa so that we can assist you in your second application to the U.S. Department of State.