Entry to the US
Helpful tips to avoid difficulties at the US Port of Entry
- If this is your first time arriving at Fresno State campus, make sure to bring a valid passport, valid visa, I-20 with the current semester program start date, admission letter, financial documents, COVID-19 vaccination documentation, unofficial Fresno State transcript if you have enrolled in classes.
- Check for any travel restrictions or requirements before your departure to see if any updated restrictions that may apply to you.
- At the border:
- If asked, provide answers truthfully and to the best of your knowledge. Do not volunteer unrelated or unnecessary information.
- Remember that your main goal as an F-1 visa holder is to study, not to pursue employment in the U.S. Therefore, if asked, provide appropriate answers.
- Make sure to carry all important documents mentioned above in carry-on luggage, not check-in luggages.
- If asked, confidently tell officials at the border that Fresno State is offering both in person and virtual courses this semester. We are NOT a fully online university.
- If you are traveling back to the United States and need a travel signature or new I-20 or DS-2019, don't panic! When you reach your port of entry, explain the situation to the officer, and ask the officer to admit you to the United States with an I-515A. The I-515A will allow you entry to the United States in F-1 or J-1 status for 30 days. If you get an I-515A at the port, visit the International Office, and we will help you complete the requirements.
If the U.S. port of entry requires confirmation of your information from Fresno State, you may contact the Campus Police at 559-278-8400 (24 hours/7 days a week), who would be able to get hold of the International Office staff in a timely manner.
All new students need to complete a mandatory check-in regardless if you are here in the US or you wish to take online classes overseas. The check-in is mandatory by the US government. Not completing the check-in link may result in severe immigration consequences, such as I-20 termination.
Documents to upload during Check-In
- Copy of passport
- Copy of I-20
- Copy of Visa if available
- Copy of I-94
Meet your International Advisor in the International Office
Official Transcripts from prior High School or College institutions delivered to the International Office Admissions Team by the end of your first semester. Failure to provide official documents will result in an international hold on your account at the beginning of your second semester.
Mandatory International Health Screening: Have your immunization records available for your required International Health Screening. You will either attend an assigned international screening day or make an appointment with the Student Health and Counseling Center. Records to include TB test, MMR, Hepatitis B (if you are 18 or younger) and COVID-19 vaccination. Immunization records in English or your immunization with an English translation are accepted.