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Making the decision to earn your degree in the U.S. can be a big commitment, but it doesn’t have to be complicated.  The Office of International Programs & Services is here to help you get started and see you through the process from applying to arrival and beyond.  Use the following tabs to navigate between the types of information designed to help you prepare to submit an application to attend Georgia Southern.

About Statesboro

Georgia Southern is a traditional residential style campus with dormitories, dining facilities, a health center, recreation center, small shops and stores and many other amenities located on the campus property.  With nearly 21,000 enrolled students, Georgia Southern is its own community within the city of Statesboro.  With nearly 1,000 acres of well-maintained landscape, students will learn and live in a peaceful setting that feels like home.  To experience Georgia Southern for yourself, take a virtual tour of the campus!  Big opportunities in a personal environment that emphasizes student learning await you.

Georgia Southern University is located in Statesboro, Georgia which has been named one of “America’s Best Small Communities.”  The university has a close relationship with the local population and supports many cultural, scientific, and economic development outreach programs.  Situated in Southeast Georgia, Statesboro experiences pleasant weather year-round and its location puts students into close proximity to several major urban cities as well as landscapes to engage in outdoor and recreational activities.  Atlanta, Jacksonville, Charleston, and Hilton Head are all just a few hours away.  The city of Savannah, where Georgia Southern keeps expanding its footprint for student opportunities, and the beaches of Tybee Island are roughly one hour away.

But there is also plenty to do at Georgia Southern and locally to keep busy!  With nearly 300 student organizations, guest speakers, cultural events, volunteer and leadership possibilities, farmers markets, football games, plays, musical performances, and research support at all program levels, you’ll always manage to get involved and remain engaged.  Statesboro offers the charm and safety of a small town but has the amenities of a larger city, such as varied shopping centers, cafes and restaurants, and entertainment options such as a cinema and outdoor parks.

Applying to Georgia Southern

If you are not a U.S. citizen or U.S. permanent resident, you will apply to Georgia Southern as an international student, regardless of your program level.  The Office of International Programs & Services works closely with the Office of Admissions to help communicate with international students regarding admissions requirements for freshman, transfer, and graduate students.

Undergraduate Admissions
Undergraduate degrees at Georgia Southern are typically designed to take 4 years to complete, which is the U.S. standard.  Before you apply, you should research the variety of academic degrees and majors available at Georgia Southern in order to find the program that is the best fit for you.

Important information related to application deadlines, the application process, and required materials for submission is located on the Office of Admissions website for undergraduate students.  Students should read admissions requirements carefully, request documents early, and make sure to schedule any necessary testing as soon as possible.  Remember, an admissions decision will not be made until all required documentation is received.

Graduate Admissions
Graduate degrees at Georgia Southern are designed to be completed in anywhere from 2 – 6 years depending on the degree subject, and whether the student intends to complete a Master’s or Doctoral degree.  Before applying, please take the time to review the variety of graduate degree programs offered by Georgia Southern.  If you are a student who intends to physically live in the U.S. and will require and F-1 or J-1 visa, it is important that you do not apply to a degree program that is offered fully online.

Important information related to application deadlines, the application process, and required materials for submission is located on the Office of Graduate Admissions website.  Students should read admissions requirements carefully as these will vary by program.  You should also request documents early, and make sure to schedule any necessary testing as soon as possible. Remember, an admissions decision will not be made until all required documentation is received.

Remember!  Even though you can apply for admission up until the deadline, applying sooner is better!  This will provide you with enough time to obtain your student visa.

Contact Us
If you have specific questions about the admission process or need assistance with applying, please contact the appropriate person for your program type.

For undergraduate admissions, email
For graduate admissions, email
For exchange admissions, email Ms. Emilee Carr.

Expenses & Tuition

Preparing for the financial commitment of studying in the U.S. is a very important part of applying to attend Georgia Southern University.  Every semester, tuition and fee expenses as well as fees for any other services provided are due to the institution on the first day of classes.  Remaining enrolled in courses is dependent upon making timely payments to Georgia Southern.  Prior to applying students should consider the following questions:

  • How long does my degree program take to complete?
  • What will my total educational expense be?
  • Will I be able to document funds to cover my first year of expenses?
  • How will I pay for my remaining years of education after the first year?

International students are required to provide documentation as proof that they have immediate funds available to cover their first year of estimated educational and living expenses while at Georgia Southern.  The amount a student is required to document will vary depending on their program level or other factors.  The Office of International Programs & Services provides guidelines for the amount of money students who choose to attend Georgia Southern must be able to document.

It is the responsibility of the student to ensure they possess sufficient funds to cover their educational expenses for their full program of study.

Actual tuition and fee charges are clearly advertised on the Georgia Southern webpage.   For undergraduate, graduate, professional program, and other course fee listings, students can visit the Bursar’s Office webpage for tuition and fees.

Visa Information

Students do not need to wait until they are admitted to submit the information required to obtain the Form I-20 or DS-2019.

Deadlines for Requesting an I-20/DS-2019:
Students beginning in the Spring (January): December 1.
Students beginning in the Summer (May): April 15.

Students beginning in the Fall (August): July 1.

One of the most important steps you need to complete prior to arriving at Georgia Southern is obtaining your student visa.  Georgia Southern does not issue the visa, but it does issue the Form I-20 or Form DS-2019 – which are “Certificates of Eligibility” for F or J status.  This form shows the U.S. government that based on your documented funds and academic record, you are considered eligible to apply for a F-1 Student visa or J-1 Exchange Visitor visa and make an appointment for an interview at your closest U.S. Embassy or Consulate.  Remember! This process takes time to complete, so you should begin as soon as possible!

IMPORTANT: If it is near the deadline to submit documents for your I-20 and you are still pending admission, Graduate Assistantship or a scholarship, you should still submit all your documentation before the deadline.

Determining Your Visa Category
F-1 Visa

Students who wish to pursue a full degree and formally graduate from Georgia Southern University should apply for an F-1 (student) visa. Students who apply for an F-1 visa will need to be regularly admitted to Georgia Southern and will need to obtain a Form I-20 from the university. Students who plan to complete bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral degrees or study in the English Language Program should apply for an F-1 visa.

J-1 Visa

Students who would like to study at Georgia Southern University from a school that has an approved exchange agreement with GSOU, or you have a government scholarship to study in the U.S. under an approved exchange or scholarship program, should apply for a J-1 (exchange visitor) visa. Exchange students and scholars who plan to study and/or conduct research at Georgia Southern for one semester or one academic year should apply for a J-1 visa and will need to obtain a DS-2019 from the university.

Students attending Georgia Southern on exchange are encouraged to visit the Exchange Student Information page for complete information on their application process.

How to Apply for an I-20/DS-2019

Regardless of the type of visa you wish to obtain, you need to send GSU the following items:

1.) A copy of your passport photo identification page

2.) SEVIS Data Form

3.) Bank Statement

  • Here is a Sample Financial Statement that you can show your bank.
  • Financial Documentation Requirements (pdf): This document states exactly how much funds are required.
  • We cannot accept electronic copies of financial documents, unless it is sent directly from the bank.  Otherwise, we must have the physical, original document before an I-20/DS-2019 can be issued.

4.) Financial Affidavit Form

  • Use this form to indicate where you expect to receive funds to cover your educational and living expenses. If any of the bank accounts are NOT in the student’s name, the Affidavit of Support included in the form must be signed by the guarantor.

5.) Dependent Information Form

    • This form is optional.  You’ll only need to complete it if you have a spouse or child who will be accompanying you in F-2 or J-2 status.
Tips on Applying for an I-20/DS-2019
    • Mail all your paperwork together.  Sending separate documents may cause a delay in your processing.
    • In order to prioritize your paperwork and ensure timely deliver, mail your documents well before the deadline.
    • Utilize a tracking service to ensure delivery.  Time we spend confirming the receipt of your documents may delay your processing.
    • Do NOT put our office number in your tracking information.  Due to the volume of paperwork we receive, we cannot track your individual package.
    • Please allow up to 1 week for your document to be prepared.
Where to Mail your Documents

If you are requesting an I-20 (for an F-1 visa), you can mail all documents to Ms. Tanya Brakhage (

For USPS, first class, and air mail: For express mail (UPS, DHL, FedEx, etc):
Tanya Brakhage
P.O. Box 8106
Statesboro, GA 30460
Tanya Brakhage
261 Forest Drive
Veazey Hall, Ste. 2021
Statesboro, GA 30458


If you are requesting a DS-2019(for a J-1 visa), you can mail all documents to Ms. Emilee Carr (

For USPS, first class, and air mail: For express mail (UPS, DHL, FedEx, etc):
Ms. Emilee Carr
P.O. Box 8106
Statesboro, GA 30460
Ms. Emilee Carr
261 Forest Drive
Veazey Hall, Ste. 2021
Statesboro, GA 30458
After Requesting an I-20/DS-2019
      • Once you have been accepted and have submitted all of the SEVIS/visa documents, it will normally take 1 week to prepare your I-20 or DS-2019.  Once prepared, you will receive an e-mail with the next steps.  Please refer to the Study in the States website as a primary reference.
      • Please review all the information in the email to ensure that everything is correct.  When you’ve verified that it is correct, you will respond to the email with your choice of shipping method for the document.  You can choose airmail for free (which could take 6 weeks or longer in some rural areas), but we recommend using the express service.  Your document will reach you in a much shorter amount of time and will include a tracking number.  You’ll find details on both these options in the email.
      • Your e-mail message will also contain the information you need to pay the I-901 fee. This fee must be paid at least three days before your F-1/J-1 visa appointment or entry to the U.S. if a visa is not required.  When paying the fee online, print at least two receipts.  Take the receipt (Form I-797) with you to your visa appointment and keep it permanently with your I-20/DS-2019 forms.
      • You will need to make a visa appointment at the appropriate U.S. Embassy, Consulate, or Diplomatic Mission.  Consult the U.S. Department of State for valuable information on what you will need for your visa appointment.  Among other things, remember to take your I-20/DS-2019, letter of acceptance, I-901 payment receipt, and financial documentation with you.   An F-1/J-1 visa is a non-immigrant visa, meaning that you will need to demonstrate that you intend to return to your home country after your studies are complete.

See more Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about obtaining a visa.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1.  Who is considered an International Student?
    International Students are students who possess neither U.S. citizenship nor U.S. Legal Permanent Resident status.  These students will need to obtain a visa which authorizes them to engage in study while in the U.S.
  2. How many International Students attend Georgia Southern?  Which countries are represented?
    Nearly 500 students are attending Georgia Southern in some type of visa status, with most of those in F or J status.  Countries vary widely, but nearly 100 are represented.  Across campus there are a variety of active student organizations that highlight nationality and heritage of certain countries or regions.
  3. What kinds of support does Georgia Southern offer for International Students?
    The Office of International Programs & Services offers a full range of International Student & Scholar Services to students in F or J status.  This includes guidance on obtaining your visa and understanding the regulations and benefits associated with your visa status.  Additionally, we offer a variety of programs to help you meet other students both from the U.S. and abroad, as well as assisting with the transition to life in the U.S., including an orientation session that addresses issue specific to International Student needs.
  4. Will I have an advisor?
    Yes.  All International Students will have two advisors.  One is an international student advisor in the Office of International Programs & Services who will be assigned to you once you are admitted.  The other is an academic advisor in your college who will be assigned once you register for your first term of classes.
  5. Can I choose to apply to an online degree program while studying in the U.S.?
    No.  International students who plan to be present in the U.S. and obtain a student visa must complete a degree program that requires their physical presence in courses held on the university campus.
  6. Are scholarships available for International Students?
    Georgia Southern does offer limited scholarships specifically for International Students.  You may also be eligible to apply for any academic or merit-based scholarships offered by the college or department of your potential major.  Graduate students may also apply for an assistantship opportunity through the College of Graduate Studies.  An application for scholarship or assistantship is not a guarantee you will receive an award.  All students should prepare adequately to cover the expense of studying in the U.S.
  7. What are the deadlines to apply?
    Priority undergraduate admission for enrolling in the Fall is typically the preceding April 1.  For Spring enrollment, the admission deadline is the preceding November 1.  Please note that the deadlines for academic or other scholarship applications and may be earlier.  Students should review the posted deadlines for undergraduate admission.
    Graduate admission deadlines vary by program, and some programs only allow new students to begin enrollment in the Fall term.  Students should review the graduate admissions deadlines provided for their program of interest.
  8. When will I receive my visa?
    Students can apply for their visa only after they have been unconditionally admitted to a program of study.  If you have already been accepted to study at Georgia Southern, please use our webpage for Admitted Students for further guidance.

Last updated: 10/4/2018