Pre-Arrival Frequently Asked Questions
Pre-Arrival Frequently Asked Questions
Completing the I-20 Checklist in iTerp
Why do I keep receiving emails from ISSS to complete the I-20 checklist when I have decided not to attend the University of Maryland or I will not need a immigration document issued by UMD?
If you do not wish to attend UMD, please login to iTerp, click on the Attendance Plan, complete the questions and hit “submit.”
If you will attend on a status other than F1/J1 status indicate what status you will use. ISSS will close your checklist once they see you will study on a different status.
If you continue to receive emails, please email us at email@example.com to ask us to close your checklist.
Is there a deadline by which I need to complete the I-20 application checklist in iTerp?
For the Fall semester, we recommend completing the checklist and submitting your documentation no later than June 1st.
For the Spring semester, we recommend completing the checklist and submitting your documentation no later than November 15th.
Please keep in mind that it may take up to two weeks to process your application and receive your I-20 document. You will then need to schedule an interview at the U.S. Embassy to apply for your visa and wait times for interviews can be long.
What is a certification of financial support or letter of sponsorship?
If your sponsor resides outside of the United States, the Letter of Sponsorship should be completed and signed by your sponsor. Click here for sample.
If your sponsor is a U.S. citizen or permanent resident inside the United States and is providing financial documentation from a U.S. bank, an I-134 Affidavit of Support form is required - the form can be found here: (https://www.uscis.gov/i-134). Please be sure the sponsor completes question #38 in Part 3, Part 7 and signs the document in Part 4, 6.a.
What is considered acceptable documentation of finances for the estimated cost of attendance?
Acceptable Certificate of Finances documents would include a current official bank statement (dated within the past 3 months) from a sponsor or yourself. The account type should be checking, savings, or CD. The statement should clearly indicate the name(s) of the account holder(s), the account number(s), type of the account(s) and the current balance/total amount of money in the account(s). Please note we cannot accept solvency certificates or bank letters that certify that you or your sponsor have sufficient funds to cover the estimated cost.
Please note that the Certificate of Finances must show funding that is accessible to the student immediately. You may not show non-liquid assets such as property, pension, provident funds, trust funds, or loans as proof of funding.
As part of the admissions process, international students (F-1s and J-1s) are required to provide financial documentation which verifies that they can afford the cost of tuition, fees and living expenses for a minimum of one year in their academic program.
My sponsor owns a business. Will you accept funding from a business account?
No. The financial documentation must be from a personal account.
My sponsor has a provident fund in India. Is this acceptable?
Provident funds are not accepted as proof of funding for an I-20.
I have a student loan. Can I use this documentation?
No. We cannot accept student loans. The money available for your education expenses needs to be in a personally held bank account that is readily accessible.
Do I need to provide my financial documents and letters of sponsorship in English?
Yes. If your documents are not in English, you will need to provide a certified translation along with the original documents.
If I have a Graduate Assistantship, Fellowship, or scholarship, what do I need to do to provide proof of financial support?
The documentation for the assistantship/fellowship/scholarship is the offer letter that provides the details as to the stipend amount, tuition remission and any other benefits. The complete letter addressed to you with these details should be scanned and uploaded into iTerp in Academic & Funding Information under I-20/DS-2019 Documentation.
To calculate if the Graduate Assistantship, Fellowship or combination of both will cover the estimated cost of attendance, you can use the online Tuition Calculator accessed through this link: https://globalmaryland.umd.edu/offices/international-student-scholar-services/tuition-calculator
Enter your program of study, whether you will receive full tuition remission and the amount of your stipend. Hit submit to see if you will need to show additional financial support.
How do I calculate how much my Graduate Assistantship and/or Fellowship will cover toward the estimated cost of attendance?
To calculate the costs covered by your Graduate Assistantship, Fellowship or combination you can use the Tuition Calculator available on the ISSS website: https://globalmaryland.umd.edu/offices/international-student-scholar-services/tuition-calculator
Based on the Letter Received
⦁ Choose Your Program of Study
⦁ Select whether you have received an Assistantship, Fellowship or Both
⦁ Select the level of Tuition Remission (select “Other” if you are given an exact funding amount for tuition).
⦁ Enter Total Scholarship Amount from any Fellowship (enter numbers only, no commas or dollar signs)
⦁ Enter the Total Stipend Amount from the Graduate Assistantship (enter numbers only, no commas or dollar signs)
⦁ Enter the number of dependents who plan to join you.
⦁ Click Submit to see how much you still need to show, if anything
Where is my I-20/DS-2019 now that I have completed the checklist?
Once you click "Submit" on your I-20/DS-2019 checklist in iTerp, your checklist will be transmitted to the ISSS Office so we can review your application. Depending on the time of year, the ISSS office may be reviewing upwards of 200 applications per day. During this busy time, it may take up to two weeks to generate an I-20/DS-2019 when there are no issues with your application.
Once your application is reviewed, it will take one of two paths:
⦁ If there is an issue with the documentation you provided, the part of the application that needs revising will be placed in “Draft” status so you can make the corrections and resubmit. You will receive an email explaining what needs to be addressed.
⦁ If there are no issues, your I-20/DS-2019 application will be forwarded to the U.S. government for processing. This can take a minimum of 24 hours. Once your I-20/DS-2019 application is available, the ISSS Office will be able to review, sign and distribute your I-20/DS-2019.
English Bridge Program
What is the English Bridge Program? Why have I been placed in the program?
Click the following links for details regarding English placement and the English Bridge Program:
English Language Requirements for Enrollment - https://gradschool.umd.edu/admissions/application-process/after-you-are-admitted/students-english-provision
Maryland English Institute - http://marylandenglishinstitute.com/wpdir/english-programs/umd-students/
English Bridge Program – Cost Breakdown
Estimated tuition, living expenses, books, and insurance for the 2023-2024 Graduate Bridge program are $48,000 without assistantship and $42,000 with assistantship. Undergraduate costs are $43,000.
The cost of the bridge program is calculated differently than all other programs. For the 2023-2024 academic year:
The estimated tuition costs is determined from 1/2 the costs of the standard graduate tuition costs.
The books/insurance/MEI calculation comes from the MEI fees + $3000 estimated books/insurance costs.
The reason it is split up differently is because the cost of MEI fees is not covered by tuition remissions through any assistantship a student may receive (though it may be covered by the assistantship's stipends).
My I-20 states that my Education Level is “Other: English Bridge Program” and the program start/end date is only for one year, but my program is a multi-year program?
You have been admitted to the English Language Bridge program which is either a 6- or 12-month program. At the end of each semester, you will have the opportunity to test out of the program If successful, the ISSS Office will update your I-20 to the required length and description of your academic program.
What is the SEVIS Code for the University of Maryland?
The SEVIS School Code is: BAL214F00061000
Approval Date: January 10, 2003
Who is the ISSS contact person and what is the office address?
The contact person for the ISSS Office is:
Phone: (301) 314-7744
Fax: (301) 314-3280
International Student and Scholar Services
University of Maryland
1128 H.J. Patterson Hall
College Park, MD 20742
I am transferring to the University of Maryland. Do I need to pay the SEVIS fee again and obtain a new visa?
If you are transferring your active SEVIS record to the University of Maryland from your previous institution and will remain inside the U.S. throughout the transfer process, then you do not need to pay the SEVIS fee or obtain a new visa, even if your F-1 visa has expired.
Can I travel outside the US while transferring my SEVIS record to UMD?
Yes. However, if you leave the country after your visa expired, you will need to apply for a new F-1 visa with the I-20 issued by the University of Maryland to re-enter the United States and return to the University of Maryland campus. Since your SEVIS number will remain the same, you do not need to pay the SEVIS fee again.
I received my I-20, but.....
The Major listed on my I-20 is not the same as the Major that I am studying at the University of Maryland – specifically I will be studying Business Analytics and my I-20 says Business Statistics.
Since universities can use different names for their programs of study, the U.S. Government has a system where each university major has a government code number (CIP code) and a matching standard name. The option that matches most closely to UMD program names is selected and used on the I-20. U.S. consular offices and immigration officers are aware of this, so we do not expect you to have any issues during the visa interview.
I need to delay/defer my admission, what do I do?
Please click on the link for the Undergraduate Admissions Office information on how to request a deferral: http://www.admissions.umd.edu/enroll/defer.php
If an admitted student to a Graduate Program wishes to change the term of entry (semester or 12-week term), the student must petition the Graduate School in writing. The student must first discuss the change with the Graduate Program and then submit the petition to the Graduate School. The Graduate School will allow one (1) term (semester or 12-week term) change requested by the program, and one (1) requested by the admitted student, contingent upon the approval of the program's Director of Graduate Studies. Any further changes will require a new application to the Graduate School. The graduate school publishes deadlines to defer, which are typically one month prior to the start of the semester. If you do not have your visa by the deferral deadline we suggest you defer to a new term.
For more information, please contact the Graduate School here: http://gradschool.umd.edu/about-us
My deferral has been approved. When can I apply for my I-20?
You will receive an email at that time inviting you to complete the I-20 application process on iTerp.
For Fall 2023 admission, the application process for the I-20 will open in February 2023.
For Spring 2024 admission, the application process for the I-20 will open in October 2023.
What are the deadlines to pay tuition? How do I pay my tuition?
Please go to the Student Financial Services and Cashiering office’s website to view your bill and/or payment. If you cannot find what you are looking for, then please contact the office directly for more information.
Student Financial Services and Cashiering - https://billpay.umd.edu
Where can I find information on financial aid for international students?
Please see the UMD Office of Student Financial Aid for information regarding financial resources for international students: http://financialaid.umd.edu/resources-policies/international-students
How do I obtain my student identification number (SID) and/or my directory ID?
To obtain your SID
⦁ International students can receive their SID by contacting the Office of Undergraduate Admissions Technical Support email: firstname.lastname@example.org
⦁ Graduate students can view the last five digits of their SID on the Enrollment Form in their TerpEngage Application.
To set up your Directory ID
⦁ You will need:
- The last five digits of your SID
- Your date of birth (Month-Day-Year)
- Your last name
Click on this link https://identity.umd.edu/?new_user
Cannot find the answer to your admissions question here?
Contact us at: email@example.com