Applications for student visas

Student visas

Time for the next step

It happens every spring. As that old song by Mack Gordon says, “the world is young again.” And, for graduating students, university admission offers start arriving. “It happens, it always happens every spring.”

This is a good point to congratulate our students admitted to post-secondary institutions from London, England; to Boston, Massachusetts; to Vancouver, British Columbia; and many places in between.  And also to remind them that it’s not over yet! While it’s tempting to relax as days get longer and warmer, you need to keep your foot on the gas. Most admission offers are conditional, meaning you need to continue working hard.



If you’re not a citizen or permanent resident of the country where your chosen post-secondary institution is located, you’re an international student. You will most likely need to apply for a study permit or student visa. European Union (EU), European Economic Area (EEA) and Swiss nationals do not currently need a visa to study in the United Kingdom.


Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada

United States State Department

United Kingdom Visas and Immigration

In most cases, your chosen post-secondary institution has a designated person to help with study permit/student visa applications; ask to find out if this is the case. Students applying for an American student visa or Canadian study permit should apply as soon as an offer of admission to their preferred institution is received. The United Kingdom only accepts student visa applications up to three months before the first day of your classes. The application process can be very time consuming. Give yourself plenty of time.


Whether you’re applying for a student visa for the United States or United Kingdom, or a study permit for Canada, there are some common, basic requirements. You will need to:

  • Provide proof of acceptance to a post-secondary program. In the case of Canada and the United Kingdom, an acceptance letter is valid proof. United States-bound students will need the Form I-20.
  • Give evidence that you can support yourself throughout your stay. Proof can take the form of bank statements or a letter from your financial sponsor showing you can cover the cost of tuition, accommodation, and living costs.
  • Prove identity. Generally a passport or travel document, and recent photographs do the trick.

You should also be able to explain how your area of study relates to your career goals and employment prospects when you return home. If you’re unable to explain this, the official reviewing your application may not be convinced that your primary motivation is to study rather than to work or live in their country. This is where the work we do on personal statements, assessments, and interview preparation will come in handy, again.


One of the things students learn through our collaboration is to anticipate questions, and to provide thorough responses. As was the case with your admission applications, you’ll want to be prepared for any questions by keeping one step ahead of consular officers.

VerveSmith helps students find schools, universities and programs that match their aspirations, and to develop an admissions application strategy. For additional help, contact us.

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