Obtaining an F-1 Visa

The International Student Services office will help you obtain an F-1 Student Visa to study at Cardinal Stritch University.


These instructions will help you study in degree programs held on campus in Milwaukee, Wisconsin at Cardinal Stritch University. F-1 visas are not available for online study or for degree programs offered at other Stritch locations.

Step 1: Apply for Admission 

Before applying for a student visa, applicants must apply for admission to the University and be accepted. 

Step 2: Prove Financial Viability

All F-1 visa applicants are required by the U.S. government to prove that they have sufficient financial resources for one year of living and studying in the United States. Review the Declaration of Financial Support form that corresponds with where you intend to live while studying at Stritch:

Step 3: Obtain or Transfer Your F-1 Student Visa

  • If you are not currently in the U.S. you will need to get a visa from the U.S. Consulate
    Obtaining a U.S. visa is a lengthy process. Once you have been admitted and provided your financial support information, a Certificate of Eligibility for Non-Immigrant F-1 Students (I-20 document) will be issued by the Stritch International Education Office. An original copy of this document must be presented to the local U.S. consulate to obtain your F-1 student visa. Review the detailed information on the U.S. State Department website.

  • If you are currently studying in the U.S. you will need to transfer your visa to Stritch
    F-1 visa holders who wish to transfer their F-1 visa status from another U.S. institution must complete the International Student Transfer Form. This will transfer the student’s SEVIS government database record from your former school to Cardinal Stritch University. Once you are admitted and your financial viability is determined, a new Stritch Certificate of Eligibility for Non-Immigrant F-1 Students (I-20 document) can be issued from the transferred SEVIS file. Download the F-1 Visa Application Checklist to ensure you have prepared all of the proper documentation.

Step 4: Prepare to Enter the United States

Once you have the F-1 visa stamp in your passport make your airline reservations. Plan to arrive no more than 30 days earlier than classes begin, and no later than the reporting date listed on your I-20 immigration document.  Remember to have your passport and I-20 with you when going through U.S. immigration.