Applying For A Student Visa
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1. The school in which you are accepted to will send the I-20 Form for F-1 Visa, or the DS-2019 form for J-1 Visa after you confirm that you will be attending their school. You need to take this form with you to the visa interview.
2. When you go to your visa interview, your passport should be valid for six more months. If your passport will not be valid for six more months, we advise you to apply for a student passport or renew your current passport. To get a student passport, you need to be registered with a university in Turkey or apply to the Ministry of National Education for a Special Student Status with your I-20 or DS-2019 form and other necessary documents. With this status you can renew your passport at the General Directorate of the Turkish National Police without paying any fee.
3. Carefully read the SEVIS (Student and Exchange Visitor Information System) Form which will come with your I-20 or DS-2019 form. With your SEVIS number which is indicated on the form, you need to pay the SEVIS fee through www.fmjfee.com with your credit card. Do not forget to print the receipt. It is important that you make the payment three days before your visa interview in order for your payment to be seen online.
4. In order to get a visa appointment from the U.S. Embassy in Ankara or the Consulate in İstanbul, you need to select the location where you will be applying for your visa on https://ceac.state.gov/genniv/. After this, you should fill in the electronic visa application form DS-160 and print the Confirmation Page which has your personal information and barcode confirmation number. Then you need to pay the Visa Application Fee and select the Turkish Post Office branch (PTT) where you will pick up your passport with visa. In order to learn the payment options of the $160 Visa Application Fee, you should visit https://usvisa-info.com/. Detailed information about how to get a visa appointment can be found on turkish.turkey.usembassy.gov/adim_1_randevu.html.
5. Make a visa appointment by calling the phone number 850- 252 6355. Visa applicants can pay the Visa Application Fee with their credit cards through the call center.
6. You need to have a photograph whose properties are described onturkish.turkey.usembassy.gov/adim_2_fotograf.html. You can attach this photograph to your form or, if you have problems, can take it with you to your visa interview.
7. Visit http://turkish.turkey.usembassy.gov/adim_7.html in order to get detailed information on the visa application process and the documents you need to take with you to the visa interview.
8. During your visa interview, your fingerprints will be taken electronically. It is not advised to put on hand cream as it makes it hard for the officials to take your fingerprint and makes the process longer.
9. The visa interview will be conducted in English or in Turkish. You will have 3-5 minutes to explain why you are going to the U.S.A. and your reasons for coming back to Turkey after you complete your selected program. Since you will be a student in the U.S.A., you may be asked to speak in English for a while.
10. If you receive the visa, your visa and your passport will be sent to the PTT branch that you have selected at the time of the visa application. If your full name happens to be the same as somebody else the administrative process may take a few months.
11. Students need to carry their passports and I-20 or DS-2019 forms with them at all times during their travels and when they arrive in the U.S.A. If you are going to leave the United States while continuing your program, you need to take the signature of your international student adviser. Otherwise, there may be difficulties getting back into the U.S.A.
12. A visa is not a guarantee of entrance to the U.S.A. Next will be the homeland security check at the port of entrance to the U.S.A. The Customs and Border Protection officials will look at your passport, I-20 or DS2019 form, and other documents. They should allow you into the United States if you have not violated the laws beforehand.
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