Sunbridge welcomes students from all over the world to attend our institute and engage in the pursuit of becoming a Waldorf Teacher
Sunbridge Institute is approved by the US Immigrations and Customs Enforcement’s Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) to invite the transfer of foreign students into the United States to study at our Institute.
Please read below to learn about the step-by-step process of applying for a visa with the support of Sunbridge Institute.
- Apply to the program of your choice at Sunbridge Institute as early as possible, preferably by October of the calendar year prior to enrollment, to allow plenty of time to complete the visa process.
- Once admitted, fill out a Sunbridge I-20 Eligibility Form, where you will have to provide documentation supporting your financial ability to pay for tuition and living expenses while present in the US, and proficiency in English. Please allow 2 weeks for this Eligibility Form to be processed.
- The I-20 Eligibility Form will be reviewed by the Registrar at Sunbridge Institute. If approved, an I-20 Form will be generated and air-mailed directly to you.
- Upon receiving your I-20, you will pay the government’s I-901 fee of approximately $350, and make your interview appointment with your local American Consulate.
- Bring the I-20 Form and your acceptance letter to the Consulate interview.
If the Consulate approves the visa, they will issue it to you directly, at which time you can make travel arrangements to get to the US for your first intensive.
Important Things to Know
- The Sunbridge Institute M1 visa is non-continuous, meaning that the I-20 is granted only for one intensive at a time. This means that an international student must:
- apply for the I-20 seven or nine times (depending on the program), and pay the $350 governmental fee each time
- return to their home country between each intensive
- The I-20 is a form provided by Sunbridge which tells the Consulate that the student has been accepted to Sunbridge Institute and deemed fit to be self-supporting financially while in the US. It is a factor in the Consulate’s decision about whether or not to grant a visa, but is not a guarantee that a visa will be granted.
- Whether a visa can be issued for a year at a time is at the discretion of your consulate, and is by no means guaranteed.
- Due to the non-continuous nature of our I-20 program, an international student cannot be guaranteed that every intensive can be attended consecutively. If any intensives must be missed due to denied visa, the student must make up the intensive the very next time that it is offered in the program schedule.
- When making travel arrangements, plan to arrive no more than 30 days prior to the intensive start date, and depart no more than 30 days after the intensive end date.
- Students using an M1 visa are not allowed to work during their stay, even as a volunteer. Therefore, any student teaching (practicum) requirements for the program must be fulfilled at Waldorf schools in the student’s home country.
- In order to maintain visa status through the program, the student must be in class attendance for the duration of the intensive, and must not remain in the US any longer than 30 days prior to, nor 30 days past, the dates of the intensive at hand.
- All applicants whose first language is not English or who have taken their prior education in a non-English-speaking college or university must demonstrate oral and written proficiency in English during the admissions process (through a hand written personal statement and phone conversation). Taking the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) may be required.
For Further Assistance
Questions regarding specific travel or visa questions that are unique to your situation should be directed to an immigration lawyer, or the United States Homeland Security website.
Questions regarding financial aid should be directed to our finance director at [email protected] / 845-425-0055 x17.
For any other questions, please feel free to reach out to our admissions office at [email protected] / 845-425-0055 x20.