Visa Information & Guidelines


Visa information

Almost all international students will need a student visa in order to travel to and enter the United States.

The Office of International Students & Scholars recommends that you contact your nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate as soon as you receive your immigration documents from our office.

Exceptions to the Visa Rule: Citizens of Canada and Bermuda do not need a visa stamp in their passports in order to travel to the U.S. They do need a valid I-20 or DS-2019 to enter the U.S. for educational purposes.

Continuing Students

Students currently in the U.S. with an expired F-1 or J-1 visa may remain in the country until the program end date listed on their I-20 or DS-2019 documents. If you decide to travel outside of the U.S., you will need a visa to re-enter the country.

If you travel to a country other than your country of citizenship and need a visa to return to the U.S., make sure your destination country accommodates third country visas before you travel. If a third country consulate denies your visa, you cannot use the automatic revalidation to re-enter the U.S. Exceptions: Citizens of Canada or Bermuda do not need a visa in their passport to enter the U.S. They do need a valid I-20 or DS-2019 with current signatures from OISS for re-entry.

Types of Student Visas

Most international students at Lehigh University hold an F-1 visa. Some students hold a J-1 visa. Lehigh typically issues a Form I-20 (or DS-2019 for J-1 students) to international students, unless the student is sponsored by another organization such as the Fulbright Program. In that case, that organization issues the DS-2019.

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