What documents are required by the MBA International Student Advisor in order to issue an I-20 or DS-2019 document?
Admission letter: In order to issue an immigration document, the MBA International Student Advisor must receive a copy of the
official letter of admission from the MBA admissions office. This is usually attached to the completed financial certificate if already submitted
to the MBA Admissions office.
Complete financial certificate: the MBA International Student Advisor must also receive your completed and signed financial
certificate with original accompanying financial documentation. Students should submit the financial certificate to the MBA Admissions office
(address is located at the top of the form). Please do not send the financial certificate directly to the MBA International Student Advisor unless
requested to do so. The MBA Admissions office will forward the financial certificate and the admission letter to the MBA International Student Advisor.
What types of documents are appropriate for verifying sufficient funds on the financial certificate?
When will I receive my immigration documents?
The MBA International Student Advisor will accept original bank statements or original, official bank letters meeting
the following criteria:
- the document is in English,
- the date of the document is not older than 6 months,
- the currency type is clearly indicated by the banking instituation,
- the bank account holder's name matches the student's name or the financial sponsor's name (as listed on the sponsor letter), and
- the document is printed on official bank letterhead or has an official banking institution stamp or banking institution representative's signature.
The MBA International Student Advisor will NOT accept electronic print outs of bank statements from on-line accounts, copies, scans, faxes of original
banking documents, or bank statements from financial sponsor's without a corresponding letter of financial support.
Students that plan to fund their academic program personally should submit their personal bank statement or letter
(as described above) demonstrating funding to cover the first year's expenses of the program. In addition, the student should submit a letter stating
how they expect to fund the remainder of their program. If a student plans, to have a sponsor for subsequent years of study, the sponsor should also
include a letter of support (see the next paragraph for details on the letter of financial support from sponsor).
Letter of financial support from sponsor
Financial sponsors should submit a letter pledging financial support for an estimated
amount of money. The letter should contain the following:
- name of the sponsor(s) and student,
- relationship between the student and sponsor,
- pledge of financial support,
- amount of financial support (the total amount of support should at least meet the estimated amount of expenses as calculated on the financial certificate),
- duration of financial support,
- signature of sponsor(s), and
If I am using the Coastal Federal Credit Union International Student Loan, how do I document this for my financial certificate?
A copy of the loan approval is emailed to students after their loan application is completed (students request the loan approval document directly from the lender), which can be included with the financial certificate.
The processing time for the visa document is about 3 weeks from the time a complete file is received (admission letter and financial certificate
w/ approved supporting documents) by the MBA International Student Advisor.
Why are international students required to fill out a financial certificate?
Unlike domestic students, international students are required to fill out a financial certificate. As indicated in the U.S. Code of Federal
Regulations regarding "Aliens and Nationality", the school must obtain reliable documentation of the student's ability to cover the estimated cost of
attendance. In order to comply with this federal regulation, UNC-Chapel Hill has developed policy resulting in the creation of a financial
certificate which all international students must complete. International students that are not requesting a visa document
from UNC-Chapel Hill are not required to submit proof of funding but are required to fill out page one of the financial
certificate and submit a copy of their current visa document. When the financial certificate is received and verified by
the MBA International Student Advisor, the visa document will be created as soon as possible. If the MBA International Student Advisor contacts
you with a request for additional information regarding your finances, please follow the directions carefully to help ensure timely processing
of your visa document.
How can I speed up the processing of my immigration document?
Many students express concerns over the time-consuming process of obtaining a student visa,especially due to the advent of security clearances at the
U.S. embassies. Please understand that the MBA International Student Advisor processes hundreds of immigration documents. Inquiries regarding the
status of your immigration document take away from time spent processing documents. Please limit your email inquiries. However, if you have a
special concern, please contact Amanda Mills at with your admission questions. If you are
concerned about the visa process, please schedule an appointment with the consulate. If your visa document has NOT arrived by the time of your
appointment, you may reschedule the appointment. Please be advised that making a visa appointment with the U.S. embassy does not guarantee that
you will receive the visa document by that date as student files are processed in the order in which complete files are received in our office.
If the embassy requires that you have an I-20 or DS-2019 in order to make an appointment, please allow our office adequate time for its preparation.
It is our goal to assist students as quickly as possible, but also to prepare visa documents in the order which complete files have been received in
How can I have my visa document express mailed to my home?
The MBA Admissions office sends visa documents to the new MBA International students via express mail. Once the visa document is mailed you should
receive an email from the MBA Admissions office with a tracking number. If you don't receive that email, please contact the MBA Admissions office directly.
Also, if you want your visa document sent to a different address, please let the MBA Admissions office know.
What do I do once I receive my visa document from UNC-Chapel Hill?
Once you have received your visa document from UNC-Chapel Hill you are ready to apply for your F-1 or J-1 visa stamp. Please make sure to pay
the SEVIS fee () prior to your visa appointment. For more information,
please see the pre-arrival information on the ISSS website: .
I am in the U.S. in visa category other than F or J, and I am NOT interested in obtaining a visa document from UNC-Chapel Hill. Do I still need to complete the financial certificate?
Yes, all international students are required to fill out a financial certificate even if they are not requesting a visa document
from UNC-Chapel Hill; however, students that are NOT requesting an F-1 or J-1 visa from UNC-Chapel Hill are responsible for filling out
PAGE ONE ONLY of the financial certificate. Students in visa categories other than F-1 or J-1 should attach a copy of their
current visa documents to the financial certificate. This includes students that are pending permanent residency in the U.S. The information
that the student provides on page one of the financial certificate assists ISSS in keeping accurate records on our student population, as well
as, assist us in advising students about their visa status.
Students that are not on a UNC-Chapel Hill immigration document are also required to check inwith ISSS.
I am currently in the U.S. in a visa category other than F-1 or J-1. I am interested in changing my status to F-1 or J-1. What are the options and procedures for changing my status?
There are two manners for changing status:
- changing status by traveling outside of the U.S., applying for the appropriate visa, and reentering in F-1 or J-1 status or
- changing status by requesting USCIS to change your current status from within the U.S.
Change status by traveling You will need to depart the U.S. and re-enter the country in F-1 or J-1 status. This will require you
to receive an initial I-20 document from UNC-Chapel Hill, which you will take to apply for an F-1 or J-1 visa at a US embassy. ISSS recommends that
you apply in your home country or country of permanent residency.
Change of status within the U.S. You will apply for a change of status with the appropriate Immigration Service Center within
the U.S. With this option you do NOT need to depart the country. Instead you will pay a fee to immigration services and complete an application
including the I-539 form. We recommend that you check the current processing times at the appropriate Immigration Service Center in order to time
appropriately the submission of your change of status application. Please contact Amanda Mills at
if you plan to apply for a change of status within the U.S. You will be provided a checklist and instructions for changing your status.
What is check-in? What do I need to bring to check in?
Check-in is required for all international students, even students that are not receiving visa documents from UNC-Chapel Hill. Failing to check-in with
the MBA International Student Advisor may result in the termination of your SEVIS document and/or holds on your university account resulting in the
inability to drop, add, or register for classes.
All MBA International students will complete their check-in at the Welcome Session corresponding with the start of their program (ASW 1, ASW 2, Fall).
At this time you will also participate in the Immigration Orientation session given by the MBA International Student Advisor. For dates of each
Welcome Session, please check here: .
Please bring the following documents with you to the Welcome Session to complete the check-in:
- passport for student and any dependents,
- visa for student and any dependents,
- I-94 card(s) for student and any dependents or approval notices for students that have changed status within the U.S., and
- I-20 or DS-2109 documents for student and any dependents
- If in a visa category other than F-1 J-1, bring any and all documents to verify your current status
During check-in, students are required to fill out a PR-100 form. Students in J-1 status will be required to sign an insurance pledge which verifies
the J-1 student's knowledge that purchasing medical insurance is a requirement of the J program.