Admission — International Students

Applicants with International Credentials

The basic requirement for admission is the successful completion of an approved secondary/high school program, or proof of the equivalent of secondary/high school completion. Applicants must submit the Herkimer College free application for admission along with a copy of their passport, complete school transcripts, proof of graduation and our Declaration of Finances with supporting bank statements in English, or an officially certified translation if the records are in a language other than English.

Students desiring International Student Application Forms should write to International Admissions at

Holders of Student Visas are required to carry an academic program of twelve (12) semester hours each semester. Failure to do so may result in termination of International Student Status at the College. This College is authorized under federal law to enroll non-immigrant alien students.

Obtaining a Student Visa

If you are currently outside the United States you should apply for an F-1 Student Visa at the United States Embassy or Consulate. U.S. Government regulations require you to attend the college which issues the I-20 which you use to enter the United States. Since you plan to attend Herkimer College, please use the I-20 that the College sends to you. If you are currently inside the United States on an F-1 Student Visa and plan to enroll at Herkimer College and do not plan to leave the United States before starting to study at our college, you will be sent an I-20 from Herkimer College that will allow you to attend our college.

As a student coming to the United States to study, you will need to apply for a visa at the United States Embassy or Consulate nearest your home. The following items will be required for your visa application:

  1. An I-20 Form and an acceptance letter provided by Herkimer College.
  2. A current, valid passport.
  3. Financial documentation for the period of time indicated on your I-20 Form, Item No. 7.
  4. Proof that your permanent residence is outside of the United States.
  5. Two passport size photographs.
  6. A non-immigrant visa application.
  7. A copy of the SEVIS receipt.


The issuance of an I-20 is created and issued to you by Herkimer College through Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS), a web-accessible database used by the Department of Homeland Security to collect, track and monitor information regarding exchange visitors, international students and scholars who enter the United States on F, M or J visas. SEVIS is managed by the Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) within U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. More information can be reviewed at 

For initial admission, you must attend the school specified on your visa. If you have a Form I-20 A-B from more than one school, it is important to have the name of the school you intend to attend specified on your visa by presenting a Form I-20 A-B from that school to the visa issuing consular officer. Failure to attend the specified school will result in the loss of your student status and subject you to deportation.

Traveling to the United States

When you arrive at your United States port of entry (a port in the United States where customs officials are stationed to oversee the entry and exit of people), you will be directed to the Immigration Station/United States Customs. The immigration inspector will ask to see your passport and I-20. The inspector will stamp your I-20. You must keep this document in a safe place as it is your permission to be in the United States.

When you arrive in the United States, you will probably arrive in New York City, San Francisco, Houston, Chicago or Los Angeles. Once you have gone through immigration/customs you will need to connect with your next flight to Central New York. The closest airports to Herkimer College are Syracuse (SYR) and Albany (ALB), N.Y. If you plan to travel to Central New York by train or bus, Union Station (UCA) in nearby Utica, N.Y. is the most convenient. When you make your final travel arrangements, please send us a copy of your flight arrangements. If you need to be picked up at the airport or at the train station, please notify us at least one week prior to your arrival.

Predeparture Checklist Documents

  1. Official transcripts from your secondary/high school and/or college.
  2. The following mandatory medical records are required prior to registration of your courses:
    • Proof of immunizations indicating vaccine dates of two Measles, one Mumps and one Rubella shot, plus a recent TB (tuberculosis) test. Either a meningitis immunization or signed waiver of such immunization is also required. If titers or blood tests such as the TB Mantoux were completed, the doctor should indicate positive or negative results.
    • A physical exam form should also be completed. All documents should be completed in English.
  3. Prescriptions for medications.
  4. If married, a copy of your marriage certificate.
  5. If you have children, a copy of their birth certificates.

*Please obtain English translations of all documents through the United States Embassy or Consulate.

Health Insurance (International Students)

All international students are required by SUNY to have health insurance for the duration of their stay in college. If an international student has coverage similar to the SUNY policy, they may seek a waiver. for additional details, refer to the International Student Handbook.

English as a Second Language

English as a Second Language (ESL) at Herkimer College serves both international students and U.S. residents for whom English is not a first language. The program includes courses in reading, grammar, writing, and speaking and listening in English, as well as courses in American Pronunciation and United States culture and student life. This intensive program is designed to prepare students for enrollment in programs leading to graduation from the College. Herkimer College does not require TOEFL for admission. All new international students must take the college placement tests, as well as the appropriate language development courses. Students may be advised to take a combination of ESL courses and college courses leading toward their degree or certificate goals. Special ESL tutors supplement the class work of students in language classes and provide language-focused assistance for students enrolling in degree and certificate programs.

Regularly scheduled individualized assessment makes it possible for students to be promoted into advanced ESL work and college academic programs in a flexible timeframe.