- International Students
The Office of International Student and Scholar Services (OISS) assists international students and their families with the process of acquiring and maintaining nonimmigrant visa status.
The first step for a newly admitted international student is to learn about the student visa options and the visa application process. Below, you can find the step-by-step instructions for entire procedure, from completing the immigration document (I-20/DS-2019) request to entry into the United States.
Maintaining visa status requires students to comply with a variety of federal regulations. Visas and immigration records may also need to be changed if you take a break in your studies, require an extension, or lose immigration status due to a violation.
Family of International Students
An F-1 or J-1 student can bring his or her spouse and children to the United States; they will be classified as F-2 or J-2 dependents. Like new students, dependents will need to apply for dependent visa status, which carries certain requirements and restrictions.
Transferring your F-1 or J-1 status to Northwestern University from another school in the U.S. requires several steps. Our Transfer a SEVIS Record to NU resource provides detailed information on the steps involved, deadlines, Northwestern SEVIS codes and more.
Getting Ready for Northwestern
New students can prepare for life in the United States. Read about the steps that need to be completed before you leave—such as fulfilling health requirements and securing housing—as well as the process for arrival and transit to our campus. After mandatory check-in, you will attend orientation.