You will need a student visa to enter the United States for study. Visa application instructions may be obtained from the U.S. Consulate nearest you, or online at At certain US consulates, you may be able to file the visa application, DS-160 online. If not, you may want to download the DS-156 and DS-158 in order to prepare the forms and pay the fee with ample time.
All visa applicants must have a personal interview at the U.S. Consulate. Because it may take time to be assigned an interview date, you should begin the visa process at least 3 months in advance of your Eastern University start date. In order to schedule a visa interview, you will need your SEVIS number found on the top right-hand corner of your I-20.

In order to secure a visa you will need various documents to support your application. Some of the supporting documents come from Eastern University, and others you must provide yourself. Please review the information on the I-20 we sent you: spelling of your name, date of birth, etc. The spelling of your name should be exactly the same as your passport, I-20. If anything is incorrect, notify promptly the Office of International Student and Scholar Services at Eastern University. It may be necessary to re-issue and re-send your document.

Documents needed to apply:

  • A letter of acceptance to Eastern University
  • A SEVIS I-20 form (F-1 visa)
  • Proof of payment of the SEVIS fee (pay online at
  • A current, valid passport
  • Non-immigrant Visa Application Form (DS-156 and DS-158 or the DS-160)
  • MRV receipt showing payment of the visa application fee
  • Visa reciprocity fee (in some cases)
  • Evidence of financial support to meet expenses
  • Evidence of English proficiency
  • Evidence of residence abroad and intent to depart the U.S. following study
  • One or more passport-type photographs

Additional application materials may be requested by the visa officer to prove your eligibility for a student visa. We suggest you inquire at the U.S. Consulate as to what you will need to bring at the time of your interview with a consular officer. Be prepared.

If your application is approved, the consular officer will place a visa in your passport. If your application is not approved, inquire as to why not. Please communicate the results of your interview to us.

Citizens of Canada and Bermuda do not need to set up a visa interview in advance, but they do need to present the proper documents when they enter the U.S.

Instructions on how to pay the SEVIS fee

More information about the F-1