The admission packet you received in the mail includes your letter of admission, pre-arrival information, and a Form I-20. You will need these documents to apply for your student visa. Applying for a Student Visa & more >>
The University of Southern California requires ALL international students receive:
For more information about non-COVID-19 health requirements see below and click here.
To determine whether non-COVID-19 immunizations are required individually, the USC Health Center will administer a blood test that will be scheduled after you arrive at the International Academy (usually after Orientation Week). If immunizations are required, they will be administered by the USC Health Center, which will also administer the tuberculosis screening. The Academy and Health Center staff will help you fill out the necessary forms and create a personalized immunization schedule.
We are pleased to arrange your transportation from the Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) to your residence in Los Angeles. Sign Up for Free Airport Pick-Up >>
On the first and second day of the program we will provide orientation to help you understand the program and the university, and administer an English placement exam. Orientation Details >>
USC International Academy will send you a Form I-20 (the Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant [F-1] Student Status) approximately 7-10 business days after confirming your admission and paying the tuition deposit.
When you receive the I-20, please verify that the following information is correct:
If you find a mistake, mark it and notify USC International Academy immediately as you will need the error corrected. We will correct the mistake and send the corrected I-20 to you.
If the information is correct, read the information on page 2, then sign and date the I-20 in the space that is provided on page 1.
Applicants for student visas should apply at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate in their country of permanent residence.
For further information about how to apply for a visa, please check the website of your nearest United States Consulate or Embassy.
Visa Wait Time – average wait time at your local embassy
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement – latest rules and regulations for those traveling to the U.S.
EducationUSA – visa information
U.S. Department of State – information about student visas
You must print the I-901 Fee Confirmation (receipt) and bring it with you to the visa interview.
You will need to apply for an F-2 visa for any dependents who will stay in the U.S. with you. If any dependent plans to study full-time, they will also need to apply for an F-1 visa (full-time study on an F-2 visa is not possible).
When applying for an F-2 visa, the student should show:
USC International Academy students are not permitted to work on campus. Students do have the option to volunteer at various organizations around Los Angeles. Once a student has been fully admitted to a degree program at USC they are permitted to work part-time on campus.
For further inquiries, please contact the Immigration and Admission Advisor at email@example.com.
STUDENT HEALTH INSURANCE PLAN
All students at USC International Academy receive a high quality medical insurance and access to the USC Student Health Center as part of the mandatory University Service Fee. This medical insurance policy covers students while they are participating in the program and helps cover the cost of care unavailable at the health center, including emergencies requiring hospitalization.
HEALTHCARE IN AMERICA 101
The health care system in the United States may be very different from the health care system in your home country. For example, in China, patients usually walk in whenever they need to see a doctor and all payments are made before they leave. International students may find the information below helpful. The points below are general to health care in the U.S. but do not apply to all cases.
1. You typically need to make an appointment to see a doctor in America. Unless you are visiting a walk in urgent care clinic or an emergency room, you will need to schedule an appointment before seeing a doctor in the U.S.
2. You typically need a referral to see a specialist, such as a dermatologist, allergist or physical therapist. This means you will need to ask your primary care doctor for a referral before you can see the specialist. You do not need a referral to see a gynecologist or mental health counselor.
3. You may have a small fee or co-pay at the time of your visit. If you are on the Aetna plan and are confused about your bill, contact the USC Student Health Insurance Office.
To find out more click here: https://studenthealth.usc.edu/getting-started/international/
We recommend you arrive at the Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) which is approximately 25 km (15.5 miles) from USC. Driving time from LAX to USC may take from 20-40 minutes.
Be sure to check with your airline for rules and regulations about baggage, limits and fees. You may also want to check with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Transportation Security Administration (TSA) for the latest travel information.
Due to recent changes at LAX, taxi and ride-share (Uber, Lyft, Opoli) pick-ups must occur at LAX-it Area next to Terminal 1. Find the LAX-it shuttle outside the terminal. Ride the LAX-it shuttle to LAX-it area to meet your taxi and/or ride-share driver.
No need to worry about getting from the airport to your residence in Los Angeles. We can take care of it for you!
How to Sign Up for FREE Transport from the Airport:
You can make your arrangements to take a taxi, shuttle or town car to USC or another Los Angeles location (hotel, apartment, etc.) any time. You can make a reservation online or by phone before you arrive or arrange service once you are at the airport.
On the first and second day of the program we will provide orientation to help you understand the program and the university, and administer an English placement exam. The following topics will be covered:
Detailed information about Orientation will be provided to you via email.
All students are required to complete Passport Verification (PPV) with USC International Academy to ensure that you are eligible to start an academic program at USC.
In order to complete this procedure, please make copies of the following items after entering the U.S., and turn them in to the Academy’s Immigration and Admissions Advisor by the end of the first day of Orientation:
Copies can be made at the FedEx Office located on the third floor of the USC Bookstore. If you live off-campus, there are FedEx Offices conveniently located throughout Los Angeles. You can search for the FedEx Office nearest you by clicking here.
On the program start date during orientation, you will be given an English Placement Exam (which consists of a timed, written essay and an oral exam) to determine your placement in the program. However, Pre-Master’s students can gain an exemption from the English Placement Exam by submitting an official TOEFL iBT, IELTS or PTE Academic Test Score Report electronically by the application deadline.
Students will learn their level placement and class schedule before the first day of class.
There is a place to change your money at the Los Angeles International Airport in the Bradley International Terminal. After leaving the airport, changing money is not easy. We advise that you bring $500 – $1000 cash ($20 bills or smaller) with you from your country.
It is not a good idea to carry large amounts of cash. Please do not bring cash to pay for your program fee or housing. Instead of cash, bring travelers checks and/or a charge card (Visa or MasterCard).
Chase Bank is located on the Jefferson Boulevard across the street from the Academy’s building. Most students use Chase Bank since there are many branch offices all over California and throughout the U.S., however there are many other banks in the area. The USC Credit Union is a bank with two branches and eight ATMs right on the university campus.
To open an account at Bank of America you need:
To open an account at the USC Credit Union you need:
ATM cards are common in the U.S. You can apply for an ATM card when you open your account. An ATM card allows you to withdraw and deposit money, transfer funds between accounts and check your account balance. ATM machines can be found at banks, shopping centers, some supermarkets and on the USC campus. Some businesses now allow customers to use their ATM cards to pay for purchases (most often at gasoline stations and supermarkets). When using ATM machines, be sure to follow necessary security precautions to guard against theft.