How to Enroll as an F-1 Student

Steps to Enroll:

  1. Prove that you have completed the equivalent of a high school education

    You will need to show evidence through United States transcripts and/or a course by course foreign credential evaluation performed by an organization that is a member of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES) www.naces.org/members.html. The most common and NACES recognized foreign credential evaluation services used by SVCC students are Educational Credential Evaluators (ECE) www.ece.org, Spantran and World Education Services (WES) www.wes.org, though any foreign credential evaluation service that is a member of NACES and provides course by course, along with high school and university level evaluations may be accepted.
  2. Prove that you have achieved the required level of English language proficiency

    International applicants are required to have achieved a minimum score on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) in cases where English was not the language of instruction of their secondary school programs. Minimum TOEFL scores are as follows: 66 on the internet based test, 173 on the computer based test, or 500 on the paper based test. Students whose secondary instruction was delivered in English may provide an official letter from the secondary school stating that English was the language of instruction, or an official transcript that indicates English as the language of instruction in lieu of TOEFL scores. Prior college level course work completed in the U.S. in the area of English composition may also be used to meet the English language proficiency requirement.
  3. Provide a photocopy of your (the student’s) passport

    or birth certificate in order to validate date of birth, citizenship, and legal name.
  4. Submit a completed Student Information Form

    Visit soar.svcc.edu choose “apply to Sauk” option.
  5. Provide official transcripts from all secondary and post-secondary institutions attended

    A foreign credential evaluation is required for any coursework completed outside of the United States. Please reference (step 1) above for guidance related to foreign credential evaluations.
  6. Provide evidence of adequate financial support

    This will need to include a financial sponsor affidavit and bank statement or official bank letter that is dated within 6 months of the application for admission. Please visit svcc.edu/students/finaid/consumer/cost-of-attendance  for current out of state cost of attendance details. Bank statements submitted using any currency other than the U.S. dollar will be converted to U.S. dollars using a web based currency conversion tool. Available funds must be equal to or greater than the total cost of a student’s attendance for the academic year in which the students begins study at SVCC, in U.S. dollars after conversion.
  7. Meet all requirements for admission into the United States

    as set forth by United States Customs and Immigration Services (U.S.C.I.S.)
  8. Comply with all other requirements established by the Office of Admissions and Records and the SVCC academic catalog

    International students shall be charged the out-of-state tuition rate.  At the discretion of the college, international students participating in intercollegiate athletics, those who are residing with or being sponsored by a resident of the district, or those who have graduated from an in-district high school may be charged in-district tuition rates.

Once Steps 1-8 are Complete:

  • For new international students currently outside of the United States, a Designated School Official may issue the student a Certificate for Nonimmigrant Eligibility (Form I-20). The student then pays the SEVIS I-901 fee http://www.ice.gov/sevis/i901, and may apply for an F-1 visa at a United States consulate in the student’s home country.
  • For international students currently attending another SEVP certified institution, please provide your current Designated School Official with your letter of admission to Sauk Valley Community College (S.V.C.C.), and request that your S.E.V.I.S. record be transferred to S.V.C.C.
  • For potential international students currently in the United States who require and are eligible for a change in non-immigrant status prior to beginning a program of study, you may choose one of the options below to gain status:
    1. You may follow USCIS guidelines for changing status while remaining in the United States. Please see: https://www.uscis.gov/i-539. Note: this process may take many months to complete, and requires that you remain in the U.S. during the processing time
    2. You may leave the U.S., apply for a new visa at a U.S. consulate, and then return to the U.S. in appropriate visa status.

Keep in mind that visa processing times vary by country and may take one month or more. Students should never make travel plans until a visa has been received, and accept total responsibility for ensuring adequate time for visa processing and travel. Please note that new international students are not permitted to enter the United States more than 30 days prior to the start date listed on their Form I-20. All international students are strongly encouraged to arrive on campus in appropriate visa status at least one week prior to the start of term to allow time for any necessary placement testing, course registration, and international student orientation. International students who arrive on campus after the start of term may not be permitted to begin classes at Sauk Valley Community College. Travel plans must be made accordingly, and the student assumes full responsibility for all travel costs.