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Apply for your Form I-20

A SEVIS Certificate of Eligibility (Form I-20) is required by the U.S. Department of State as a part of an F-1 visa application.  This form is issued by each university or college to admitted students who have submitted the required documentation.  If you receive a Form I-20 from more than one school, you will have to choose which school you will attend before the visa interview and supply that school’s form to the embassy officer for the visa interview.  The required documentation for the Form I-20 is: 

  • Meet all eligibility requirements and be admitted to a UTSA degree-seeking program.
  • Submit the following documents to the International Services Office.
    • UTSA Confirmation of Financial Resources (CFR) form.
    • Financial documents. Please review the CFR form for estimated expenses.
      • Financial support documentation n the form of financial institution letters or statements.
      • UTSA TA/RA letter, if you have been granted an assistantship.
      • UTSA Scholarship letter, if you have been granted a scholarship.
    • Copy of the pages in your passport that contain your picture, name, and date of expiry.
  • Students transferring their SEVIS record to UTSA from another U.S. college or university have additional requirements. See F-1 Transfer In to UTSA.
  • UTSA International Services usually sends an email to admitted students within 2-3 days of notice of acceptance.  If you have been admitted and have not received an email, you may contact the International Services Office at newinternational@utsa.edu.

Receive your Form I-20

Express Mail Service

The International Services Office can mail your I-20 by express mail. Refer to your confirmation email for instructions on how to request express shipping. 

Regular Mail

This delivery method is not recommended as it takes several weeks, is not trackable, and is not guaranteed delivery.

Reporting the Status of Your Visa Application

If you have problems with your visa application, need an update of your Form I-20, or cannot attend, please send an email to newinternational@utsa.edu.

Preparing for Your Visa Interview

Below is important information that you will need when applying for an F-1 visa

  • UTSA's school code: SNA214F01500000
  • How to pay the mandatory SEVIS I-901 Fee

Additional information on documents for the visa application may be found here

As a part of an F-1 or J-1 visa application, students are required to pay the SEVIS I-901 fee. The I-901 fee is in addition to the consular visa fee and is non-refundable. Bring a copy of your payment receipt to your visa interview with the U.S. Consulate or Embassy, as your visa application will be denied if the I-901 fee has not been paid.

Canadian students do not need F-1 visas in order to enter the U.S. to study, but they are still subject to the SEVIS I-901 fee. You must make the payment before arriving at the port of entry. Proof of payment will be required.
The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) website include information on I-901 payment options, refunds, payment status verification, requirements for the I-901 fee, and frequently asked questions.

You can pay the I-901 SEVIS fee through the following methods:

  • By mail: You can submit the I-901 form and a check or money order that has been drawn from a U.S. bank and is payable in U.S. dollars. Many foreign banks can issue checks drawn from a U.S. bank or foreign subsidiaries of a U.S. bank.) A receipt will be mailed to the address listed on the I-901.
  • Online: You can submit the I-901 form online and make the payment using a credit card. A receipt will also be mailed to the address listed on the I-901 form. If you decide to pay via the Internet, we strongly suggest that you print a copy of the payment confirmation and keep it with your immigration documents.
  • In-person through the Western Union Quick Pay service: You must read the instructions for this payment option and bring a printed copy of the instructions and the sample of the completed Western Union form to the Western Union Agent to correctly process your payment.

A narrated video tutorial, available on Study in the States, walks students and exchange visitors through the steps of paying the I-901 SEVIS fee.

DHS Arrival Reporting Requirement

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) requires all F-1 students to maintain their F-1 record through several reporting procedures throughout the course of their F-1 status.  Reporting your arrival to the school on your Form I-20 within 30 days of U.S. entry is a DHS requirement.


Newly admitted F-1 students must complete the arrival reporting requirement to activate their SEVIS record and notify DHS of their arrival.

To meet your arrival reporting requirement you must complete the following after you arrive at UTSA before your first semester begins. The International Services Office will facilitate reporting your arrival to DHS and activating your SEVIS record.

  • Register and attend the International Student Orientation. Visit the Orientation webpage for information and registration.
  • Submit a copy of your immigration documents to the International Services Office. Visit the Immigration Document Verification page for details on documents to submit and submission instructions.
  • Update your student record with your new local address. 

Not meeting your arrival reporting requirement in a timely manner can negatively impact your F-1 status.