I-20/DS-2019 Application

To come to the US as an F-1 or J-1 Student, you will first need to request your form I-20 or DS-2019.  You will apply on-line via the ISSS iPenn system.

You will need the following in order to access and complete the on-line application:

  • An email from ISSS which will include a limited access PIN and application instructions
  • Your 9-digit Admission ID (which is provided by your Admissions Office) or your US Social Security number

  • A copy of your passport page(s) with your name, date of birth, citizenship & expiration date

  • The required Financial Documentation

Processing Time: Please note that as of March 23rd, 2020, ISSS office is working entirely remotely. Current processing times are approximately 3 weeks but may be extended due to the limitations of remote work. You can check the status of your application in iPenn.  

Upon receipt of your form I-20 or DS-2019, you will then take the next steps to acquiring F-1 or J-1 status.

Additional Resources


Financial Requirements

The I-20/DS-2019 application process and US visa interview require you to show sufficient funding to cover the financial requirements of your program.  

Please note:

  • Only proof of your FIRST YEAR at Penn is required.

  • These requirements are estimated expenses and are subject to change.

  • The estimated and actual figures may differ but minor discrepancies will not affect the visa application. 

  • The amount includes tuition, fees and living expenses for one academic year (fall and spring semesters)

    • This amount is for the first year of study at Penn.

    • Summer expenses are not included.

  • The financial information will appear on your I-20 or DS-2019.

  • The financial document(s) you provide must equal or exceed the financial requirement for your program. 

  • The amount shown on your I-20/DS-2019 may be less than the amount you have provided on your financial statements. The I-20/DS-2019 only needs to show you have funds for the estimated cost for your program.


Frequently Asked Questions


What's next?

Please review  Acquiring Your F-1/J-1 Status for the next steps in the process.