How to apply to TCC as an international student!
International students are "non-immigrant" visitors who wish to come to the United States to study. The Office of International Student Services will guide you through the admissions process. Follow these below steps to get started at TCC.
Apply for Admission
- Apply for admission to TCC using our online application.
- If you plan to transfer to a 4-year university, select Associate of Arts (A.A.), no matter what your bachelor's degree will be.
- If you do not plan to transfer to a 4-year university and are seeking a terminal 2-year degree, select Associate of Science (A.S.).
- After you submit your application, you will receive a confirmation e-mail with your TCC ID number, TCC email address and password. Keep this page for your records as you will need this information to log in to TCC Passport and access your TCC email.
Submit Required Supporting Documents
Official High School or University Transcript and Diploma
All academic records must be issued in the native language and be accompanied by a certified English translation.
Official Course-By-Course Evaluation of High School or College Transcripts, Diploma and/or Examination Results.
Submit an official evaluation of high school or college transcripts and diploma by a member of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services, such as the World Education Services, Inc. or Josef Silny & Associates, Inc. Costs for these services are paid by the student. Students may deal directly with the agency, or you can contact ISS for assistance.
Submit TOEFL or IELTS Report
International student applicants whose native language is not English must submit test scores from either the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) to demonstrate English language proficiency. Test scores must be sent directly to International Student Services from the testing agency. ISS will not accept test scores that are more than two years old. The minimum scores required for each exam are required below.
- TOEFL: 45 (Internet-based test); 133 (computer-based test); 450 (paper-based test)
- IELTS: Overall band score of 4.5 or higher
Submit Proof of Funding
Submit proof of funds which demonstrates your ability (or your sponsor's) to pay for classes, living expenses, and health insurance during your program at TCC. Please click on the ISS Funding Guideline and Form to read more about the funding requirements for international students on F-1 visas. All financial documentation should be sent directly to International Student Services.
**All official transcripts/evaluations, TOEFL/IELTS results, and proof of funding must be sent directly to the following address.**
Tallahassee Community College
International Student Services, SU 242
444 Appleyard Drive
Tallahassee, FL 32304
Receive Form I-20
After your admission application file is complete and we have received all required supporting documentation, your Form I-20 will be processed and mailed to you in a pre-arrival packet.
The Office of International Student Services uses an online services - eShipGlobal - to send acceptance packets to foreign countries. To learn more about how to create an account with eShipGlobal and request express shipment of your Form I-20 and acceptance letter, please click here.
Your Form I-20, the Certificate of Eligibility for Non-Immigrant Student Status, is an important document that you must keep in a safe place at all times. It demonstrates that you have been accepted to study at TCC as an F-1 visa student and is required to apply for your visa.
F-1 Visa at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate
After you receive your Form I-20, you will need to pay the I-901 SEVIS Fee ($200). You will need to present proof of your I-901 Fee payment at your visa interview, so please print your receipt.
Then, make an appointment for a visa interview at the U.S. embassy or consulate nearest you. Keep in mind that wait times to schedule an interview can vary greatly from country to country, so be sure to check the wait time at the location nearest you.
Arrival in the United States
Please notify the ISS when you receive your F-1 student visa. The ISS will send you more information on arriving in the United States, what documents you need to carry with you, and when you need to report to campus for the International Student Orientation Program.
Questions? Contact the Office of International Services Office at (850) 201-8258 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit us in the Student Union, room 242.
Obtaining an F-1 Visa
Student visas are issued by U.S. embassies and consulates located outside the United States. The application process typically includes an interview with a consular official to determine the applicant's purpose of travel to the U.S.
Most visa interviews are short and are conducted in English, so good preparation is essential. It is important to be completely honest and thorough and plan your answers ahead of time.
Learn more about applying for a student visa at an American embassy or consulate.
Prepare for the Interview
You should have a clear plan.
Make sure you can answer these questions:
- Why do you want to study at TCC?
- What are your educational and professional goals?
- How will you use your degree when you return home?
You must be able to demonstrate...
- Adequate funding to cover tuition and living expenses
- Ties to your home country
Sample Interview Questions
Why do you want to study at Tallahassee Community College in the United States?
- You should be able to talk about why you are interested in pursuing your degree at TCC in a clear and succinct manner.
Do you have any family members or relatives in the United States?
- If you have relatives in the United States, identify who they are, what their relationship is to you, and where they live.
What ties do you have in your home country that will draw you home?
- Clearly express your motive to return to your country after you complete your studies in the United States.
- This might include:
- Job offer or admission to an educational program upon return
- Documentation of research you've done on your intended job market in your home country. Examples include translated job advertisements, written description of a discussion you had with a person in the kind of job you want, or quote from newspaper article or trade industry write-up.
- Statement of future plans. How does your academic program fit into your future plans?
- An indication of close personal ties in the home country (parents, spouse, children, fiancé, etc.).
- Local identity card (indicating, if possible, your entire immediate family).
Who is funding your educational expenses?
Advice for a Successful Visa Interview
- Wear formal clothing.
- Be polite. Greet the officer with a smile and say "good morning." You want to make a good first impression.
- Give brief and to-the-point answers. The interview will not last long, so you want to give brief, succinct responses to the consular officer's questions.
- Be prepared to explain how your degree fits your career plans.
- Focus on your study goals and future plans during the interview and not your desire to be with family or friends in the USA.
- If you do not understand a question, say "I do not understand. Please repeat the question."
- Be honest during the interview.
- Be prepared to express why you want to study in the USA and why you will return to your country. You are expected to be able to describe why you want to pursue your degree at Tallahassee Community College.
- Good preparation is key. Be sure to have all supporting documentation, including your financial documents.
- Be positive and confident!
NAFSA (Association of International Educators) released a great resource: 10 Points to Remember When Applying for a Student Visa. We strongly recommend that you review these tips before your interview at the embassy or consulate.
Required Documents for Interview
Check for specific requirements in your home country. Typical documentation includes:
- Completed visa application (Form DS-160)
- Visa processing fee - paid to U.S. Embassy or Consulate
- Original Form I-20 issued by Tallahassee Community College
- Receipt for SEVIS I-901 Fee ($200).
- Valid passport
- Passport-sized photo
- High school (and post-secondary, if applicable) transcripts, in English.
- TOEFL/IELTS scores (if applicable)
- Documents demonstrating reasons to return to home country after completion of academic program, if available.
- Financial documentation demonstrating your ability to pay for your program and living expenses during your time at TCC.
Examples of financial documents:
- Bank statements and/or letters
- Scholarship award letters
- Government grant/award letters
- Proof of sponsorship from by employer
Issuance or Denial of Visa
If you are issued a visa: Congratulations! Please confirm your arrival with the ISS staff.
If you are denied a visa: Politely ask the consular official why your application was denied. Also, ask when you may reapply for a visa. Then, contact the ISS office to discuss your next steps.