The Certificate of Eligibility (Form I-20)
The Certificate of Eligibility (Form I-20) is the form which you must use to secure your permission to enter or remain in the United States. This form will be mailed to you after your complete application has been evaluated and you have been admitted. Before using the Certificate of Eligibility, please read Section #11 “Student Certification” at the bottom of page one. When you are certain you understand the statement, sign and print your name on the line provided and indicate the date.
*If you are now outside the United States; present the Certificate of Eligibility to the nearest United States Consulate or Embassy to secure a student visa. The I-20 will be returned to you and should be presented again with your passport to the immigration officer at the port of entry into the United States.
FOR INITIAL ENTRY INTO THE UNITED STATES, YOU MUST REPORT TO AND REGISTER AT THE SCHOOL SPECIFIED ON YOUR STUDENT VISA IN YOUR PASSPORT.
Student Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS)
As a prospective F-1 international student you are required to pay a one-time fee of $200 to the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Payment must be made prior to applying for an F-1 visa at a US embassy/consulate. (If you are not required to obtain a visa to enter the US , but you will be an F-1student, you still need to pay this fee. An example would be Canadian citizens).
DHS uses this fee, often called the SEVIS Fee, to cover operational costs of the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS), a component part of the Student Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP). SEVIS is a central computerized system that maintains and manages data concerning international students (F-1 status), exchange visitors (J-1 status), and their dependents (F-2 and J-2 statuses) before and during their stay in the United States .
TO PAY THE SEVIS FEE, FOLLOW THESE STEPS:
Online payment of the SEVIS fee is strongly encouraged, in order to obtain an immediate fee payment receipt. You will need the receipt when you apply for a student visa. There is no extra cost to pay online.
1. You will need a Visa, MasterCard or American Express credit card to make payment
2. Go to the Student and Exchange Visitor Program website.
3. Pay attention to the following issues when completing the form:
a. the form reads as if you must mail it in. Do not mail it. Submit it via the Internet.
b. Enter your name exactly as it appears on Form I-20 (F-1 students)
c. Prospective F-1 students only - the School Code for Purdue North Central is CHI214F1046003 (CHI should be entered in the first box, numbers 10460 in the second, numbers 003 in the last box)
d. Answer all of the questions regarding where a receipt should be mailed. Choose first class airmail. (Even though you are paying online and will receive an electronic receipt at the end of this process, the US government will still mail a receipt to you).
4. Complete the online form
5. Choose credit card payment option
6. Submit Visa, MasterCard or American Express credit card information
7. Print an online receipt. Do not wait for the mail receipt.
8. Make a copy of the online receipt for your personal records. Carry it with your other important immigration documents. (F-2 dependents who will apply for an F-2 visa do not need to pay the fee, however, they should bring a copy of their spouse's F-1 receipt when applying for their F-2 visa)
9. Bring your online SEVIS payment receipt with you when you apply for a student visa! Do not wait for the mail receipt! (Please be informed that there will also be a visa application fee that you must pay at the US embassy/consulate)
For additional information, contact Sue Wilson, Director of School Partnerships/International Student Advisor, firstname.lastname@example.org, 219-785-5236.
New Social Security Evidence Rule for F-1 Students
Beginning October 13, 2004, F-1 students at Purdue North Central who apply for a Social Security Number (SSN) on the basis of on-campus employment, will have to present a letter from Sue Wilson, Director of School Partnerships/International Student Advisor, stating that the student is authorized to engage in on-campus employment, the nature of the employment to be engaged in, and the employer for whom the student will be working.
The F-1 student will also have to provide a statement from his or her on-campus employer to prove that the student is engaging in, or has secured, employment. This new rule does not apply to F-1 students who will be on Curricular or Optional Practical Training. These students may show their work authorizations on their I-20 forms (and for those on OPT, the EAD card) as proof of employment.