New Students

Next steps for new Seattle University students

International Student Centers students enjoying lunch outside on a sunny day

Congratulations on joining the international student community of more than 900 students from approximately 74 countries around the world!

Three Steps to Transition

Now that you are a Seattle University student, there are three major steps that both new and transfer students need to follow in order to successfully transition here.

Pre-arrival to Seattle University

First Time Studying in the U.S.

This information applies to any student with an "Initial" I-20, even if it is not the first time studying in the U.S.


Hand carry the following documents with you:

  • Your passport with visa stamp
  • Your SEVIS form I-20 from Seattle University
  • Proof of no more than one fully online course on your schedule (less than 1/3 of your classes should be online).
  • Evidence of financial support from the sponsor who is listed on your I-20
  • Evidence of your student status, such as your letter of acceptance, class schedule, or tuition paid receipt
  • Receipt of your paid SEVIS fee (pay fee)
  • Contact information for the International Student Center. Our office phone number is 1-206-296-6260. For after-hours assistance, please call 1-206-296-5990.

If the border officer asks for a name of a school official from Seattle University, you can give one of the following International Student Advisors' names: Dale Watanabe, Chloe Thomas, Tashi Ragbey, or Sandra Bui.

Transfer Students

If you have an active SEVIS record from another school and you will be beginning your studies at Seattle University within 5 months of your current program end date, you must transfer your SEVIS record within your 60-day grace period, which is the 60-days after your current I-20 end date (or EAD card end date, if on OPT). If you will not begin your new program within 5 months, please request a new Initial I-20.

Follow your current school's guidelines for transferring your SEVIS record to Seattle University.

  • Although not required, you may complete the Transfer-In Form
  • Submit your  Declaration of Finances Form and/or Bank Statement to Admissions. 
  • Check-in with the International Student Center at Seattle University  (see next step below)
  • Inform the ISC if you are traveling outside of the United States before classes begin so we can issue you a Transfer-Pending I-20. 
  • If you will be entering the U.S. on a transfer-pending I-20, you will also need to have proof of registration for a hybrid or in-person course. 
  • Update your overseas and local addresses through MySeattleU.

Change of Status Students

For students on a different visa who are currently inside the U.S. and applying for a Change of Status using Form I-539.

  • Submit your financial documents to to request a "Change of Status" I-20
  • Complete the Check-In process and include a copy of your current visa.
  • Remain inside the U.S; do not travel outside the U.S. with your Change of Status pending
  • Hybrid/In-Person Course Requirement: If you began your studies online from your home country and are entering the U.S. on an Initial Form I-20, Transfer-Pending Form I-20, or Change of Level I-20, you MUST be registered for mostly in-person courses and can only take one online course or no more than 3 credits online.

You should bring proof of your hybrid/in-person course registration when you enter the U.S. This is an SEVP regulation, and you will be required to complete that hybrid or in-person course during the term that you enter the U.S. 

Feel free to email if you have any questions about this SEVP regulation.

Student Check-in

By law, ALL new or transfer international students must complete a series of new student check-in requirements, as a requirement of your student visa. Some of these requirements must be completed online, while others are in-person tasks.

Online Requirements for both Undergraduate & Graduate Students

Upload the following documents to your Admissions portal:

  • Passport Bio Page
  • Visa stamp
  • Complete the New International Student Info Form within the Admissions portal
  • Complete New International Student Online Orientation Canvas course (invite will be sent to Seattle University email address)
  • Add a local (Seattle) & overseas (home) address to MySeattleU
  • Law Students only: Complete same items above, but instead of uploading documents to Admissions portal, email copy of passport, visa stamp, and completed New Student Information Sheet to

In-Person Requirements:

  • Attend the mandatory in-person Welcome Workshop at the start of the quarter. Information will be sent out regarding date, time, and location of the workshop a few weeks before the start of each quarter.

All students:

About 2-3 weeks after classes have begun and you have uploaded/submitted your check-in documents, updated your addresses, completed the online Canvas course & attended the in-person welcome workshop, the ISC will issue you a Seattle University Continued Attendance I-20 valid for the duration of your program. 

Failure to complete these new student requirements could jeopardize your immigration status.

Welcome Workshop

Congratulations on your acceptance to Seattle University! One of your first steps in joining the Seattle University community is attending our mandatory International Student Welcome Workshop. Here, you will be introduced to services at the International Student Center, assisted in managing your student immigration status, and informed about international student health insurance. You will also get a chance to meet other international students and learn about the Seattle University campus.

In conjunction with the in-person Welcome Workshop, students are also required to complete an online orientation Canvas course.

Whether you are a new undergraduate student, new graduate student, or new transfer student, attending the Welcome Workshop and online Canvas course is critical to your success at Seattle University.  Additionally, in order to travel outside the United States with your Seattle University Form I-20 after classes begin, you will need to complete the entire Canvas course and attend the in-person Welcome Workshop.

Please plan your arrival to Seattle in conjunction with the mandatory session dates for either undergraduate or graduate students. Once the orientation Canvas course has been published, you will receive an email to join through your Seattle University email.

Undergraduate International Students Dates:

  • Tuesday, Sep 17, 2024, 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. — Campion Ballroom

Graduate International Students Dates:

  • Thursday, Sep 19, 2024, 1-4:30 p.m. — Campion Ballroom

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact us at