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Pre-Arrival Frequently Asked Questions

Completing the I-20 Checklist in iTerp

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 to ask us to close your checklist.

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 1st.

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.

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. Please be sure the sponsor completes question #21 in Part 3, and signs the document in Part 5

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.

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, or trust funds 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.

No. The financial documentation must be from a personal account. 

Provident funds are not accepted as proof of funding for an I-20.

Yes, we accept educational loans but only if they meet the requirements. Please visit our website for more information.

Yes. If your documents are not in English, you will need to provide a certified translation along with the original documents.

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.

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.

To calculate the costs covered by your Graduate Assistantship, Fellowship or combination you can use the Tuition Calculator available on the ISSS website.

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

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

Click the following links for details regarding English placement and the English Bridge Program:

Estimated tuition, living expenses, books, and insurance for the 2024-2025 Graduate Bridge program are $49,500 without assistantship and $43,500 with assistantship. Undergraduate costs are $45,500.

The cost of the bridge program is calculated differently than all other programs. For the 2024-2025 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 + $3,500 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).

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.

Transfer Students

  • The SEVIS School Code is: BAL214F00061000
  • Approval Date:  January 10, 2003

The contact person for the ISSS Office is:

Sarah Kim

Pre-Arrival Manager

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

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.

Yes, after you have completed the I-20 checklist on iTerp and have received your “transfer pending” I-20 from UMD you can use this I-20 to re-enter the US prior to the start of classes.

Please keep in mind that your passport should be valid for a minimum of 6 months beyond your planned return to campus.

If traveling outside the U.S., your visa must be valid when you re-enter. If you have changed visa status, have an expired visa or you have used all your entries, you will need to apply for a new visa before you re-enter the United States.

I received my I-20, but.....

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.

Undergraduate Students

Please click on the link for the Undergraduate Admissions Office information on how to request a deferral.

Graduate Students

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.

You will receive an email at that time inviting you to complete the I-20 application process on iTerp.

For Fall admission, the application process for the I-20 will open in February.

For Spring admission, the application process for the I-20 will open in September.

General Questions

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

Please see the UMD Office of Student Financial Aid for information regarding financial resources for international students.

Here are some external scholarship opportunities available to international students. Please keep in mind that this list is presented for informational purposes and it is the responsibility of each applicant to evaluate and apply.

External Scholarship Opportunities

The following is a list of scholarship/awards opportunities for international students:

  • P.E.O. 2024 Scholar Awards
    • The P.E.O. Scholar Awards (PSA) was established in 1991 to provide substantial merit-based awards for women of the U.S. and Canada who are pursuing a doctoral-level degree at an accredited college or university. The maximum award amount is $25,000.
  • Charlotte W. Newcombe Doctoral Dissertation Fellowships
    • The Charlotte W. Newcombe Foundation funds a major program of graduate fellowships in the humanities and social sciences. These fellowships support students in the final stages of doctoral study whose work offers significant potential for advancing academic scholarship related to ethics and/or religion. The Institute for Citizens & Scholars administers all aspects of this program, including a rigorous national competition for Newcombe Fellowships each year.
  • BHW Scholarship : Women in STEM
    • Women who are pursuing an undergraduate or master's degree and are majoring in science, technology, engineering, or mathematics. The maximum award amount is $5,000.
  • MPOWER Global Citizen Scholarship
    • Scholarships awarded annually to international and DACA students enrolled at schools MPOWER supports.
  • Out to Innovate
    • The Out to Innovate™ Scholarships, established in 2011, are intended for LGBTQ+ undergraduate and graduate students pursuing degrees in science, technology, engineering, or mathematics (STEM) programs. The scholarships are designed to promote academic excellence and increased visibility of talented LGBTQ+ students in STEM careers.
  • Korean American Scholarship Foundation (KASF)
    • KASF scholarships (which range from $500 to $5,000) are offered to the qualified Korean American students (including foreign students from Korea). All applicants must be enrolled in a full time program in the U.S during the scholarship application year.
  • The Quad Fellowship
    • The Quad Fellowship sponsors exceptional incoming and continuing master's and doctoral students to study science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) in the United States. The fellowship supports students from Australia, India, Japan, the United States, Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam. Quad fellows receive a one-time stipend of $40,000 to be used for academic expenses and access to various networking and programming opportunities.
  • The Aga Khan Foundation’s International Scholarship Programme
    • The Aga Khan Foundation’s International Scholarship Programme (AKF ISP) is an opportunity for outstanding scholars from Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Egypt, India, Kenya, Kyrgyz Republic, Madagascar, Mozambique, Pakistan, Syria, Tajikistan, Tanzania, and Uganda, who have no other means of financing their studies, to pursue postgraduate education. AKF ISP awards are structured as half grant and half loan – where you need to repay 50 percent of the award amount.

To obtain your SID

  • International students can receive their SID by contacting the Office of Undergraduate Admissions Technical Support email:
  • 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

Cannot find the answer to your admissions question here?  Contact us at:

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