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Passports & Visas

Obtain or Renew Your Passport Immediately

If you do not already have a passport that will be valid for at least six months after your return to the U.S., you should apply for one as soon as possible.

Obtain a Visa (if required)

It is your responsibility to verify the visa requirements of your host country, and if necessary, to obtain your visa. Contact your program to find out if you need a visa and if they provide assistance or have suggestions for obtaining one. If not, please contact the nearest embassy or consulate for instructions or consider consulting with a visa assistance service such as Perry International in Chicago, which will charge a fee for their services:

Students who are enrolled in GeoBlue International Health Insurance who need proof of insurance for the purpose of their visa application (or scholarship application) can now download a letter directly from the GeoBlue student site. Log in, create an account if you haven't already, and download a visa letter.

Northwestern Programs

Students participating in the following Northwestern programs and exchanges will likely need to apply for visas to enter their host country to study:

U.S. citizens participating in Northwestern study abroad or Journalism Residency programs in locations other than those listed above will likely not need to apply for a visa in advance of departure.

*GLO will assist with batch visa processing for specially designed programs in China, as long as students complete and submit their requirements to GLO by the published deadlines. Students who do not comply with GLO’s deadlines will be responsible for processing their own visas at their own cost.

For students participating in all other programs, GLO and/or your exchange institution will provide guidelines and requirements about the visa application process for your host country via Canvas and email, as appropriate. However, GLO is not responsible for obtaining your student visa, nor is GLO responsible for visa complications, delays, or denials. Although GLO is willing to help you with the visa application process, we do not have any control over visa requirements or granting visas: the decision to issue you a visa rests solely with the consulate or embassy of your host country.

Entry requirements can change at any time, so you are advised to pay close attention to consular updates and to be prepared to address all entry requirements for your host country. All students must obtain a visa if required to do so by their host country in order to participate in their program. Failure to obtain a visa will result in your having to withdraw from your program, subject to the Withdrawal and Refund Policies for Northwestern-Sponsored Programs

Special Note for Non-US Citizens

Contact the Northwestern Office of International Student and Scholar Services at (847) 491-5613 immediately to ensure you understand any INS requirements. Make sure you do not jeopardize your residency status by participating in a program abroad.