Getting a Visa

New students who use SCC’s I-20 to enter the U.S. must:

  • report in person to SCC’s orientation session for new international students
  • enroll for and attend the first semester at SCC
  • present originals of : passport, visa, I-94 and SCC I-20*

* Students transferring from other U.S. schools must present their most recent I-20 instead of a Solano Community College I-20.

Student visas (F-1 and M-1) are issued by U.S. Embassies and Consulates located outside the United States. The application process typically includes an interview with a consular official to determine the applicant’s purpose of travel to the US. Most visa interviews are short (one to two minutes) and are conducted in English, so good preparation is essential. It is important that you plan your answers ahead of time and that you be completely honest and thorough.

Essential Points of a Visa Interview

  • Have a clear plan. Describe why, where, and what you plan to study in the U.S.
  • Demonstrate adequate funding to cover tuition and living expenses. For detailed expense information, see the Costs page of this website.
  • Explain your intent to return home. Make it fit your specific situation and avoid generalities.

Document Requirements

Check for specific requirements in your home country. Typical documentation includes:

  1. I-20 immigration document – issued by Solano Community College
  2. Visa and processing fee – paid to U.S. Embassy or Consulate
  3. Photo, passport-sized
  4. Valid passport
  5. Completed visa application form
  6. High school (and university, if available) transcripts, in English
  7. TOEFL scores (if available)
  8. Documents indicating reasons to return to home country or other country outside the US, if available.
  9. Financial statement(s): originals to show and photocopies to submit
    Examples of financial documents:
    • Bank statements
    • Certificates of deposit
    • Earnings statements
    • Tax records
    • Proof of sponsorship from by a corporation or other entity
      This might include:
      • Job offer or admission to an educational program upon return.
      • Documentation of research you’ve done on your intended job in your country. For example, translated job advertisements, written description of a discussion you had with a person in the kind of job you want, or quote from newspaper article or trade industry write-up.
      • Statement of future plans. (Care should be taken to demonstrate the relevance of the US course of study to those plans).
      • An indication of close personal ties in the home country (parents, spouse, children, fiancé, etc.).
      • Local identity card (indicating, if possible, your entire immediate family).

Commonly Asked Interview Questions

Why do you want to study at Solano Community College in the United States?

Do you have any family members or relatives in the United States?

If you have relatives in the United States, identify who they are, what their relationship is to you, and where they live.

What ties do you have in your home country that will draw you home?

  • Establish a strong personal motive to return to your country after you complete your course of study.

Who is funding your educational expenses?

  • Show documents proving there is a valid source of funds, and explain clearly how they were obtained and/or will be obtained in the future.

Issuance or Denial of Visa

If you are issued a student visa:

Congratulations! Contact us to confirm your arrival plans.

If you are denied a student visa:

Politely ask the consular official why the application was denied. Also ask when you may reapply for a visa. Then, contact Solano Community College. If the denial was based on a misunderstanding or on poor communication, the SCC official may be able to write a letter for you to present to the consular official during your second visa interview. Such a letter does not guarantee approval, but will serve to clarify points of possible misunderstanding.

If you have questions or concerns, please e-mail us at: