Applying for Your I-20/DS-2019

Now that you have decided on F-1 or J-1 status, it is time to apply for your I-20 or DS-2019. 

Current I-20/DS-2019 Processing Times

Please note that due to the COVID-19 outbreak, ISSS is operating remotely until further notice. Current processing times are approximately 3 weeks.You can check the status of your application in iPenn.

Due to the large volume of applications and inquiries at this time, we are unable to offer expedited processing.

You will need the following in order to access and complete the online application via the ISSS iPenn system:

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 as listed below.

I-20/DS-2019 Requirements

Click the boxes below to learn about the financial and document requirements for your I-20/DS-2019 application. Incomplete or improperly submitted information could result in delays in the issuance of your document and/or your arrival to the U.S.

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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.

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Document Requirements

  • A completed financial cover sheet  must be included with your documents.

  • Documents must not be older than 1 year at the time of the I-20/DS-2019 application.

    • Highly recommended: Convert funds into US dollars. If not possible, clearly indicate the quantity and type of currency.

  • Funds must be liquid. This means that they can quickly and easily be converted to cash, such as checking or savings accounts without withdrawal prohibitions.

    • Examples of funds that ARE NOT liquid include:

      • An assessment of the value of your assets (home, car, property, jewelry)

      • Proof of employment or salary

      • A report on your stock and investment portfolio  

      • Pension or retirement plan

  • Bank statements:

    • Online printouts should include account holder's name, account type, and bank name.

    • Highly recommended: You have an official bank statement for your visa interview.

  • Bank letters:

    • It is preferred your bank letter is in English.  If not possible, you must include a notarized English translation.  

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Types of Financial Documentation

  • Personal Funds:

    • Saving or Checking bank account in your name

    • Pre-approved student loan taken out in your name (such as Wharton loan)

  • School Funding:

    • Fellowship, Scholarship, Assistantship or Grant money awarded to you by Penn

  • Other Funding:

    • Scholarship or grant from a non-Penn source (example: home government, current employer or private organization)

      • Sponsor letter should be on official letterhead  

    • Bank account in your mother's or father's name

    • If a person other than your mother or father is supporting all or a portion of your study, please include an affidavit of support letter.

help_outline

Frequently Asked Questions

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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.

description

Document Requirements

  • A completed financial cover sheet  must be included with your documents.

  • Documents must not be older than 1 year at the time of the I-20/DS-2019 application.

    • Highly recommended: Convert funds into US dollars. If not possible, clearly indicate the quantity and type of currency.

  • Funds must be liquid. This means that they can quickly and easily be converted to cash, such as checking or savings accounts without withdrawal prohibitions.

    • Examples of funds that ARE NOT liquid include:

      • An assessment of the value of your assets (home, car, property, jewelry)

      • Proof of employment or salary

      • A report on your stock and investment portfolio  

      • Pension or retirement plan

  • Bank statements:

    • Online printouts should include account holder's name, account type, and bank name.

    • Highly recommended: You have an official bank statement for your visa interview.

  • Bank letters:

    • It is preferred your bank letter is in English.  If not possible, you must include a notarized English translation.  

note_alt

Types of Financial Documentation

  • Personal Funds:

    • Saving or Checking bank account in your name

    • Pre-approved student loan taken out in your name (such as Wharton loan)

  • School Funding:

    • Fellowship, Scholarship, Assistantship or Grant money awarded to you by Penn

  • Other Funding:

    • Scholarship or grant from a non-Penn source (example: home government, current employer or private organization)

      • Sponsor letter should be on official letterhead  

    • Bank account in your mother's or father's name

    • If a person other than your mother or father is supporting all or a portion of your study, please include an affidavit of support letter.

help_outline

Frequently Asked Questions

What's Next?

Acquiring F-1/J-1 Status