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How to Apply

One of the most exciting and rewarding events in a young person’s life is being offered admission to one’s dream university and embarking on a new life on campus – it’s an even greater adventure when it is in a different country. International applicants generally follow the same procedures as domestic students in terms of application procedures, but have a few extra steps given their non-immigrant status. NC State welcomes and encourages international applicants in all programs and the staff members of the various admission offices as well as OIS stand by ready to assist you with questions or difficulties.

There are several different admissions offices that process applications from international applicants depending on the program of interest and level of study:

Who is an international applicant?

Students who are not U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents of the U.S. (also known as Resident Aliens, Permanent Residents, and Green Card holders). Applicants and students who are in the US in a non-immigrant visa status or are overseas and need a student visa to enter the US for study purposes are international students. 

Who needs a visa?

Most international students at NC State are here on a student visa and are either in F-1 status or J-1 status (named after the visa types F-1 and J-1). Not all international students have a current visa in their passport and several hundred other international students are not on a student visa at all, but on an employment visa, a dependent visa, or are in some other status that permits study.  See the section on Immigration for more information. 

Types of International Applicants

  • International applicants who reside overseas and need a student visa to enter from abroad;
  • International students who are already in the U.S. on a student visa (F-1 or J-1) and need to transfer their SEVIS record to NC State;
  • Nonimmigrants already in the U.S. who are in a nonimmigrant status that permits study without having to change their status;
  • Nonimmigrants already in the U.S. who are in a nonimmigrant status that permits study but wish to change their status for personal, immigration, or employment eligibility reasons;
  • Nonimmigrants already in the U.S. who are in a nonimmigrant status that does NOT permit study and need to change their status or leave and re-enter on a student visa;
  • Nonimmigrants who are out of status, are undocumented, or otherwise need immigration assistance and advice in order to study in the U.S.;
  • Overseas students who wish to enroll in a Distance Education (DE) program and who will remain overseas or are ordinarily on-campus students but who will engage in a study abroad program, overseas research program, or a temporary leave of absence. For more information about visa status options available to applicants, please visit the OIS Visa Application webpage.

Cost and Scholarships

The estimated costs of tuition, fees and living expenses are reviewed each year and posted on the NC State Cashier’s Office website. International students are not eligible for the same types of merit-based or need-based financial aid programs that North Carolina residents or domestic students are, but a few colleges and departments do have modest top-up grants or scholarships. When available, scholarships and assistantships are offered by the academic department and should be stated in the offer letter. You can find additional information on the Financial Aid site.